because of declines in low-income students’
performance. In fact, average test scores
of both low-income and middle-income
students have risen substantially in math
and very modestly in reading. But they have
been outpaced by high-income students,
whose scores have risen even faster.
2Author’s calculations, based on Current
Population Survey data (King et al., 2010).
Alexander, K. L., Entwisle, D. R., & Olson,
L. S. (2007, April). Lasting consequences
of the summer learning gap. American
Sociological Review, 72( 4), 167–180.
Autor, D. H., Katz, L. H., & Kearney, M. S.
(2008). Trends in U.S. wage inequality:
Revising the revisionists. Review of Economics and Statistics, 90( 2), 300–323.
Bailey, M. J., & Dynarski, S. M. (2011).
Gains and gaps: A historical perspective
on inequality in college entry and completion. In G. Duncan & R. Murnane
(Eds.), Whither opportunity? Rising
inequality, schools, and children’s life chances
(pp. 117–132). New York: Russell Sage
Belley, P., & Lochner, L. (2007). The
changing role of family income and ability
in determining educational achievement
(Working Paper 13527). Washington,
DC: National Bureau of Economic
Dobbie, W., & Fryer, R. G. (2011). Getting
beneath the veil of effective schools: Evidence
from New York City (Working paper
17632). Washington, DC: National
Bureau of Economic Research.
Karen, D. (2002). Changes in access to
higher education in the United States:
1980–1992. Sociology of Education, 75( 3),
King, M., Ruggles, S., Alexander, T., Flood,
S., Genadek, K., Schroeder, M., et al.
(2010). Integrated public use microdata
series, Current Population Survey:
Version 3.0. [Machine-readable database].
Minneapolis: University of Minnesota.
Kornrich, S., & Furstenberg, F. (2013).
Investing in children: Changes in parental
spending on children, 1972 to 2007.
Demography, 50( 1), 1–23.
McLanahan, S. (2004). Diverging destinies:
How children are faring under the second
demographic transition. Demography,
41( 4), 607–627.
Murnane, R. J., Willett, J. B., & Levy, F.
(1995). The growing importance of
cognitive skills in wage determination.
Upward social mobility has become
far more difficult and far less certain
than it was 50 years ago,
Review of Economics and Statistics, 78( 2),
National Center on Time and Learning.
(2012). Time well spent: Eight powerful
practices of expanded-time schools. Boston:
Piketty, T., & Saez, E. (2003). Income
inequality in the United States, 1913–
1998. Quarterly Journal of Economics,
118( 1), 1–39.
Putnam, R. D., Frederick, C. B., &
Snellman, K. (2012). Growing class gaps in
social connectedness among American youth.
Cambridge, MA: Harvard Kennedy School
of Government. Retrieved from www.hks
Rampey, B. D., Dion, G. S., & Donahue,
P. L. (2009). NAEP 2008 trends in
academic progress. Washington, DC:
TRENDS of the TIMES
National Center for Education Statistics,
U.S. Department of Education.
Reardon, S. F. (2011). The widening academic achievement gap between rich
and poor: New evidence and possible
explanations. In G. J. Duncan & R. J.
Murnane (Eds.), Whither opportunity?
Rising inequality, schools, and children’s life
chances (pp. 91–115). New York: Russell
Reardon, S. F., Baker, R., & Klasik, D.
(2012). Race, income, and enrollment patterns in highly selective colleges, 1982–2004.
Stanford, CA: Center for Education Policy
Analysis, Stanford University.
Reardon, S. F., & Bischoff, K. (2011).
Growth in the residential segregation of
families by income, 1970–2009 (Project US
2010 Census Brief). Washington, DC:
National Bureau of Economic Research.
Retrieved from www.s4.brown.edu/
Saez, E. (2012). Striking it richer: The evo-
lution of top incomes in the United States
(updated with 2009 and 2010 estimates).
Berkeley: Department of Economics, Uni-
versity of California, Berkeley. Retrieved
Schwartz, C. R., & Mare, R. D. (2005).
Trends in educational assortative marriage
from 1940–2003. Demography, 42( 4),
Tourangeau, K., Nord, C., Lê, T., Pollack,
J. M., & Atkins-Burnett, S. (2006). Early
childhood longitudinal study, kindergarten
class of 1998–99 (ECLS-K), combined user’s
manual for the ECLS-K fifth-grade data files
and electronic codebooks (NCES 2006–032).
Washington, DC: National Center for
Education Statistics, U.S. Department of
Copyright © 2013 Sean F. Reardon
Sean F. Reardon ( sean.reardon@
stanford.edu) is a professor in the
Stanford University Graduate School of