*Names in bold indicate Presenter
In this paper, we use student achievement to illustrate the various normative principles associated with the level and distribution of educational goods among individuals. We also devote considerable space to the issue of achievement gaps between groups of students defined by their family background. Achievement gaps between well identified groups of students – such as black and white student – receive a tremendous amount of attention in U.S. policy debates. A central question is which achievement gaps are normatively significant and why. Depending on how the achievement gaps are measured, efforts to reduce them could be consistent with the distributional goals of either equality or adequacy. In some situations, such efforts may foster the development of other types of educational goods. In other cases, however, what is really at stake may be the low achievement level of members of the lower performing group rather than the size of the gap between the average achievement of the lower and the higher group. In those cases, the relevant distributional criterion may be priority to the less advantaged.
- ACHIEVEMENT APPAM ch 4 HFL.pdf (264.1KB)