National Academies’ Report Calls for a National System to Measure Equity in Education and Identify Disparities in Outcomes and Opportunity

June 2019

On June 13, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) released a new report, Monitoring Educational Equity, that calls for a centralized system of indicators of educational equity in an effort to bring attention to disparities in the U.S. education system.

The report states that a national system of indicators would enable valid comparisons of school, district, and state performance across a number of important student outcomes and resources, and proposes 16 indicators of educational equity, including “Disparities in Academic Readiness,” “Disparities in Engagement in Schooling,” and “Disparities in Performance on Tests.” The report also recommends that the federal government work with states, school districts, and educational intermediaries to develop a national equity indicator system and incorporate it into relevant data collection.

“AERA was pleased to be a co-sponsor of this important and timely report,” said AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine. “The National Academies’ report, which demonstrates the pressing need for a universal system of indicators to measure increasing divides in educational opportunity, will enhance the research community’s ability to effectively analyze and report on relevant data related to educational disparities.”

The NASEM report was sponsored by AERA, Atlantic Philanthropies, the Ford Foundation, the Spencer Foundation, the U.S. Department of Education, the William T. Grant Foundation, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.