Unlocking Opportunity for African American Girls

Posted by National Women's Law Center on November 10, 2014

Needed: My Sister’s Keeper

A new report from the National Women’s Law Center looks at the significant barriers that African American girls face to educational attainment, including lack of quality educational opportunities; pervasive racial and gender stereotypes; discriminatory discipline practices; high rates of exposure to sexual harassment and violence; juvenile-justice system involvement; and lack of support if pregnant or parenting while still in school. In almost all states, the high school graduation rate for African American girls is significantly below that of white girls and the national average for all girls, and African American girls are behind on a range of academic measures related to college readiness. The report urges educators, school leaders, community leaders, advocates, policymakers, and philanthropic organizations to take action to advance the success of African American girls, complementing the important ongoing work to improve educational outcomes for boys and men of color. It calls for targeted philanthropic funding domestically that is aimed toward providing social services, support systems, and programs that address the needs of all African American girls, especially the most vulnerable — those who are low-income, in the child welfare system, victims of child sex trafficking, struggling to complete school, or in the juvenile-justice system.


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