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2010 Spotlight

High-Poverty Public Schools


Drawing upon indicators presented in The Condition of Education 2010, this special section has provided a descriptive profile of high-poverty public schools in the United States. It has examined the characteristics of students who attend these schools, as well as the characteristics of principals, teachers, and support staff who work in these schools. Using the percentage of a school's enrollment that is eligible for the National School Lunch Program's free or reduced-price lunch (FRPL) as the measure of school poverty, high-poverty schools are defined as schools having 76–100 percent of their enrollment eligible for free or reduced-price meals. This special section has presented data showing that high-poverty schools differed from low-poverty schools on a number of indicators related to the types of students these schools serve; certain characteristics of the teachers and principals who work in these schools; and the educational outcomes for students who attend these schools.