The Latino Education Gap

Latinos are the largest ethnic minority group in the Southwest and the fastest growing in the United States. More than one-third of Latino students are English Language Learners and they consistently perform poorly on state tests and have lower graduation rates than Whites and Asians, according to Department of Education data. In this ongoing series, the Fronteras Desk explores the Latino achievement gap in education throughout the Southwest. We also look at how states and school districts are looking beyond federal guidelines and are creating innovative solutions to close the gap.

Latino Series Montage2

Earlier this year, Fronteras reported a series on the Latino education gap in the United States. The centerpiece of the series was the radio documentary Not Quite Trilingual, in which reporter Devin Browne followed a little girl through the public education system in Los Angeles for five years.
A Latina student in school
California, Arizona, and Massachusetts have all replaced bilingual education with an English immersion model. This was supposed to help close the achievement gap. But by most measures, it hasn't. In the finale of our series, we follow one student through five years of English-only classes and find that she's still struggling to communicate, in any language.
An hour-long special comprised of five different stories reporting on the Latino education gap.
California voters called for a virtual end to bilingual education. But things have changed. As part of our ongoing series, some educators believe an increasingly popular model of bilingual teaching can help close the Latino education achievement gap.
Studies show a Nevada preschool program helps close the achievement gap for Latino students. As part of an ongoing series, we look further into the program, which serves only 2 percent of the state’s 4 year olds. And there is no funding to expand it.
The Latino education gap doesn't seem to apply to girls: Latinas attend college and graduate at a much higher rate than males. As part of an ongoing series, we look at a program that helps young Hispanic girls and their mamas.
Community service, political activism and mentoring are helping some Latino students close the achievement gap at Rancho High School in Las Vegas. It is part of an ongoing series exploring the Latino education gap.