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The Journal of the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration at The George Washington University


Integrating public schools by family income is a relatively new proposal in the education reform debate. To enhance equity in education, advocates have sought approaches that will not meet the judicial resistance that race has met when used to integrate schools. This paper provides a review of the proposal to integrate public schools by family income. It examines research on achievement by students of all income levels in schools with concentrated poverty, trends in racial segregation, and the case in support of plans to balance schools by family income. The paper also provides a summary of the plans in place in two school districts, the response of key policy players to these plans, and the possible challenges to wider implementation.

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