High academic expectations for all students that are measurable and attainable are imperative in order to close the inequity gap in American public education. It all begins with our failure to have high expectations for the children of the poor. This simply requires that an effective school bring the children of the poor to minimal mastery of basic skills. Focus must be on student learning with a combination of discipline, intensity, concentration, and commitment. Research proves that our public schools know the methods and technics in order to successfully educate all children. An average student who attended “high rigor instruction schools” would learn about 78% more mathematics between grades 8-12 than comparable students in a “low rigor instruction school. We must stop throwing money or funding at the problem, and strategically educate these students with research based methods and rigor.
Despite several decades of reform, public schools in America are criticized by some as not teaching all children effectively. Consistently poor test results and low graduation rates prove the critics right. It takes a village to raise a child, but the same village must share accountability when many of their children are not learning in the public educational systems, especially the poor. Districts with higher poverty rates have fewer highly educated, experienced teachers and less stable teaching staff. These schools need highly trained and most effective teachers in their classroom. Highly effective teachers show passion, respect, caring attitude, fairness, skilled communication, creativity, sound knowledge of content, and have a positive impact on the lives of students, parents, and colleagues. Schools of underprivileged students must have educators with these traits.