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(TX) American Educational Research Association 2017 Annual Meeting
April 27 - May 1
Contemporary research discussions regarding educational opportunity bear a familiar ring to those of past decades. They affirm the importance of equal opportunity while highlighting the significance of empirically rigorous research for improving opportunity and access. As a result, they have reignited research and policy debates, dating back more than 60 years (Clark and Clark, 1947, and the Coleman Report, 1966), about segregation and civil rights in the U.S. There is little dispute that considerable change has occurred in legal and institutional mandates as well as social practices that served as barriers to equal opportunity. However, a series of recent research articles, book volumes, and national initiatives have re-examined this change by focusing on the tensions between opportunity and outcomes in relation to several factors, among them, educational attainment, academic achievement, and college enrollment and retention. They raise questions about the meanings and uses of the concept, equal educational opportunity; the social barriers that contribute to inequality; and approaches to increasing educational attainment and achievement for all children.
We are left asking: Are we better positioned today to improve educational opportunities than we were in the past? What are the pathways to achieving equal educational opportunity? How do we transform the power of knowledge and scholarly discourses into public will, engaging practice, and responsive policy? These questions of knowledge and action to achieve equal educational opportunity will be the focus of the 2017 Annual Meeting.