Racial Segregation and the Black/White Achievement Gap, 1992 to 2009


Direct all correspondence to Dennis J. Condron, Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, 518 Varner Hall, Oakland University, Rochester, MI 48309; e-mail: condron@oakland.edu


In this study, we draw on longitudinal, state-level data to analyze the impact of four distinct forms of school racial segregation on black/white achievement gaps in math and reading. Pooled time-series analyses with two-way fixed effects suggest that increases in black–white dissimilarity and black student isolation contribute to black/white achievement gaps, increases in black–white exposure reduce achievement gaps, and increases in exposure of black students to other minority students have no impact. We conclude by discussing the implications of school racial segregation as a source of academic achievement disparities between black and white students in the contemporary United States.