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The rhetoric and reality of gap closing: when the "have-nots" gain but the "haves" gain even more .

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
The American psychologist
Publication Date
Volume
60
Issue
2
Pages
149–160
Identifiers
PMID: 15740447
Source
Medline

Abstract

Many forms of intervention, across different domains, have the surprising effect of widening preexisting gaps between disadvantaged youth and their advantaged counterparts--if such interventions are made available to all students, not just to the disadvantaged. Whether this widening of gaps is incongruent with American interests and values requires an awareness of this gap-widening potential when interventions are universalized and a national policy that addresses the psychological, political, economic, and moral dimensions of elevating the top students--tomorrow's business and science leaders--and/or elevating the bottom students to redress past inequalities and reduce the future costs associated with them. This article is a first step in bringing this dilemma to the attention of scholars and policymakers and prodding a national discussion.

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