Series editor(s): Dr Donald Cunnigen and Dr Marino A Bruce
Subject Area: Sociology and Public Policy
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|Title:||Struggling to educate its own: The Obama college attainment challenge and the city of Philadelphia|
|Author(s):||D. Crystal Byndloss|
|Volume:||16 Editor(s): Donald Cunnigen, Marino A. Bruce ISBN: 978-0-85724-167-2 eISBN: 978-0-85724-168-9|
|Citation:||D. Crystal Byndloss (2010), Struggling to educate its own: The Obama college attainment challenge and the city of Philadelphia, in Donald Cunnigen, Marino A. Bruce (ed.) Race in the Age of Obama (Research in Race and Ethnic Relations, Volume 16), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.149-174|
|DOI:||10.1108/S0195-7449(2010)0000016009 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
|Article type:||Chapter Item|
Purpose – Using Philadelphia as a case study, the chapter explores whether the city is poised to meet the Obama administration's goal of restoring the country's place to first in the world in college attainment. The chapter provides an overview of the national funding and policy contexts in which the president announced the college attainment goal, examines Philadelphia's efforts to improve high school and college graduation rates, and describes the challenges facing low-income students in disadvantaged neighborhoods who articulate college ambitions. The chapter ends with a set of policy recommendations to improve education outcomes in cities that struggle to educate their own.
Methodology/approach – At its core, the chapter uses interview and focus group data to understand college awareness in North Central Philadelphia. The study draws upon interviews and focus groups conducted with students, parents, teachers, program administrators and staffs, and other community stakeholders.
Findings – The data show that Philadelphia is unprepared to meet the president's challenge due to extremely low literacy rates and other significant barriers associated with poverty.
Research limitations/implications – It is a small qualitative study. Additional study designs can build upon the data collected.
Practical implications/originality/value of paper – The study provides valuable insights into the challenges and opportunities to improve education outcomes in Philadelphia.
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