In a growing number of states a single reading test determines which third-grade students advance to fourth grade. Proponents of the rule say that kids learn to read until third grade, and then read to learn. But critics argue that holding students back does more harm than good in the long run.
Philadelphia's school district plans to close a quarter of its school buildings in coming years to eliminate a huge budget hole. But parents and activists don't trust the decision-makers. Many of them suspect the plan is a ruse to force charter schools and privatization on the district.
Roosevelt High School in East Los Angeles has the only Planned Parenthood-funded family planning clinic in the Los Angeles Unified School District. The program has its opponents, but the school's chief nurse says "90 percent of the time, abstinence just isn't working for them."
Many kids in disadvantaged neighborhoods feel the system isn’t just broken –it’s rigged, and not in their favor. One professor says this “empowerment gap” is just as profound --and important to address--- as the “achievement gap.”
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