National Study reveals most important factor(s) in whether or not children in America will rise out of poverty


A just released national study,The Opportunity Atlas: Mapping the Childhood Roots of Social Mobility, , says that the most important economic and social indicators that will predict whether or not a child rises out of poverty as an adult are.........

  • Individual determination and grit?
  • Family support?
  • Family income?
  • Quality of chools?
  • Level or parent(s) education?
  • Being raised in a two-parent family?
  • Luck?
  • Something else?

Before you read this New York Times news article, or the study itself, What do you think are the most important indicators?

Once you have read the article or the study itself, what do you think the implications might be for our field? What are we doing that might help children raised in poor families? What (else) should we be doing?

David J. Rosen, Moderator

LINCS CoP Program Management group






Very interesting, David! Implications to our field? I suppose that remains to be seen. If the research proves to be true, funders will need to change the direction of the priorities they set, people will need to be re-educated in order to accept changes,  and a lot more collaboration among new partnerships will need to emerge from that redirection in order to implement new practices. I would suggest that instructional activities would do well to incorporate the knowledge gained from the findings. Thanks for sharing the article and raising good questions about where we go from here if the findings are correct. As others drop in to contribute, I hope that we can come up with some creative suggestions about how to redirect our practice! Leecy

Thank you for drawing our attention to this important study, David. It's so good to see this growing problem being discussed in the national media. In fact, I heard a fascinating Morning Edition report on NPR this week on the actions Charlotte, NC has been taking to address this entrenched problem. I wonder if our colleagues in Charlotte could offer their perspective.

This is a critical issue for us to discuss as a field. The learners we serve should be invited to the table for this conversation.

Cheers, Susan Finn Miller

Moderator, English Language Acquisition and Teaching & Learning CoPs