Asian and white students comprised more than three-quarters of students across all Gifted & Talented programs in 2018-2019, despite being about a third of the overall kindergarten cohort.
Conversely, Black and Hispanic kindergarteners comprised 63 percent of the kindergarten population but only 16 percent of students in Gifted & Talented programs.
The disparity was particularly acute for Hispanic students. Despite being much more numerous across all kindergarten programs (40.1 percent) than Black students (22.9 percent), Hispanic students were only moderately ahead of Black students with respect to participation in Gifted & Talented programs (9.3 percent versus 6.7 percent).
Students in the specialized high schools came from census tracts where the median household income averaged $62,457 compared with $46,392 for students in other high schools. (All dollar amounts are reported in 2012 dollars).
If we rank the census tracts by their median income and then divide the tracts into equal fifths (quintiles), we observe large differences between the share of students in specialized high schools and other high schools from each quintile.
Demographic Changes. IBO compared the demographic composition of the specialized high schools under each of the three scenarios with the actual demographic composition of the ninth grade class in specialized high schools in 2017-2018.14 We found that:
More black and Hispanic students would get offers. Under the top 7 percent scenario, the share of black students receiving offers would increase by five times and the share of Hispanic students receiving offers would increase by more than four times compared with the share of those groups that actually attended a specialized high school in 2017-2018.