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Policy Matters

Nov 4, 2020

Education may be a great equalizer when it comes to economic mobility. But reality falls far short of this ideal. One reason: factors outside the school system can have a decisive impact on academic performance, particularly for students from poor households. The Baker Institute recently undertook an in-depth analysis of 80 Harris County schools to determine how these factors – ranging from food insecurity to depression – help shape educational attainment. What do the study’s findings tell us about the needs of less-advantaged students in Harris County?   Are these lessons transferrable to the nation at large? And how has the Covid-19 pandemic affected already existing inequalities?

This episode features two guests. The first is Dr. Quianta Moore, Fellow in Child Health Policy at the Baker Institute’s Center for Health and Biosciences. The second is Dr. Christopher Kulesza, Research Analyst in the institute’s Child Health Policy Program. They are co-authors of “Why are Children Underperforming in School? A Comprehensive Needs Assessment of Students in Harris Country.”