Students of Color Were Closing the Achievement Gap. COVID-19 Is Projected to Erode that Progress.

In March, COVID-19 turned American education on its head. The nearly overnight switch to online learning was seamless for the few with experience with online learning. For everyone else, it was jarring. While the digital divide had been all but closed in brick-and-mortar schools, it was still far too wide for both students and teachers at home. Many have speculated and projected learning losses for large swaths of American students. But, increasingly, it’s clear that students of color are affected at higher rates than others. After decades of gains by Black and Latino students in high school achievement and graduation, many wonder how far progress is going to walk back.

High schoolcompletion rates of 18- to 24-year-olds, by race/ethnicity: 2000 through 2016.
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