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Unfinished Business: Closing the Racial Achievement Gap in Our Schools (Jossey-Bass Education) Hardcover – March 31, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-0787972752 ISBN-10: 0787972754 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Series: Jossey-Bass Education
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (March 31, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787972754
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787972752
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 6.3 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,501,366 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Pedro A. Noguera and Jean Yonemura Wing (2006) in their edited volume, Unfinished Business: Closing the Racial Achievement Gap in Our Schools, address this ongoing problem of what it will take to fulfill the promise of education reform and educate all students to high levels -- using the Berkeley High School Diversity Project as a case study.... The editors focus on the possibilities for achieving these lofty goals through public education, arguably our nation's most equitable and democratic institution." (Teachers College Record, October 2006)

"Unfinished Business was written because of the belief that public education is vital for a healthy democracy and that schools can play a decisive role in making our nation less divided and fractured on the basis of race, class, culture, gender, and language." (Teachers College Record, October 2006)

From the Inside Flap

"Fulfilling the promise of public education is the reason that so many schools and districts are now working desperately to find ways to close the achievement gap. The persistence of wide disparities in achievement that correspond with the race and class backgrounds of students serves as a reminder that America remains a deeply divided nation, a place where the lines separating the haves and the have-nots are manifest in every facet of our lives."
—from the Preface

In this groundbreaking book, co-editors Pedro Noguera and Jean Yonemura Wing and their collaborators investigated the dynamics of race and achievement at Berkeley High School—a large public high school that the New York Times called "the most integrated high school in America." Berkeley's diverse student population clearly illustrates the "achievement gap" phenomenon in our schools. Unfinished Business brings to light the hidden inequities of schools—where cultural attitudes, academic tracking, curricular access, and after-school activities serve as sorting mechanisms that set students on paths of success or failure.

Unfinished Business examines the results of the Berkeley High School Diversity Project, a six year research and organizing project that brought together high school students, parents, teachers, staff, and university researchers to explore how a school and a community can act together to address the racial disparities that exist in academic performance. The book explores what factors contribute to the disparity in academic achievement between students of different racial and class backgrounds, and identifies the factors that are responsible for the racial separation of students within the school.

Unfinished Business analyzes the successes and failures the project members encountered during their work and describes the revelations and insights they gained during the project. While the task of closing the achievement gap is daunting, Unfinished Business explains the concrete steps that parents, educators, and the larger community can take to help close the education gap in their community.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas Paget-Clarke on November 19, 2006
Format: Hardcover
An excellent book, unique in its own diversity. The "Book Description" and "Inside Flap" above give a good description of how this book is about the science of the research and organizing of the Berkeley High School Diversity Project, I just wanted to add a little about how the telling of the book itself expresses an understanding of diversity.

To me, the book is about the importance of education for everyone in our diverse society and how one project, one school, one community looked into achieving this education. My view is that the way Unfinished Business accomplishes this is by presenting highly researched data through both the analysis of the researchers and the writings of the people who are the data -- the students, the parents, the teachers, the school staff. Additionally, the book's content encompasses research, school and community use and understanding of research, and personal reflection. I was continually surprised at where the "plot" of the book went -- at the discoveries, the observations, and conclusions I did not expect to read. This is an important book about the process of education and civil rights.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Emma Ruth Deguzman on March 21, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was sold as USED. It was very well used, however, it has served its purpose, thank you very much.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful By D. Moment on October 17, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
for parents teachers and students. This book answers the questions I always though someone else already asked, I just didn't know where to find the answers. It's a must read.
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0 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mr on April 14, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is the published results of a study done at one school. If the author had conducted the research at many schools their case would be more believable. Several times in the book the authors contradict themselves. If any person researches achievement gaps they will find achievement gaps in most places including schools with few or no "people of color." If we are going to narrow the achievement gap then we need to address the issue of parenting as well as several other issues.
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