CUREJ - College Undergraduate Research Electronic Journal

Untapped Talent: Finding Ways to Educate America’s Low-Income High-Achieving Students

Kelly M. Siddle

Division: Social Sciences

Dept/Program: Political Science

Document Type: Undergraduate Student Research

Mentor(s): John DiIulio

Date of this Version: 27 March 2009

This document has been peer reviewed.



It is well established that many students enter the classroom unprepared for the academic requirements awaiting them and spend most of their school years attempting to catch up to grade-level standards. According to a report by the National Assessment of Education Progress, almost two-thirds of the nation’s fourth- and eighth-graders score below grade-level in both math and reading assessments. As a result, education policy often focuses on program development geared towards augmenting the performance levels of these under-achieving students. While these statistics are staggering and the United States’ education system must strive to alleviate poor performance, it must also allow not lose sight of the other one-third. School systems must promote equal progression of students at every level. Unfortunately, despite the saliency of the challenges facing low-income high-achieving students, this population has remained largely unaddressed on the national and local scene. In order to insure the success of low-income students and use their talent to its utmost potential, public schools across the nation need to implement programs specifically designed to fit the needs of these individuals. In essence, the government needs to work to close the achievement gap between low- and high-income high-achieving students.

Suggested Citation

Siddle, Kelly M., "Untapped Talent: Finding Ways to Educate America’s Low-Income High-Achieving Students" 27 March 2009. CUREJ: College Undergraduate Research Electronic Journal, University of Pennsylvania,

Date Posted: 18 May 2009

This document has been peer reviewed.




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