What is the cause of racial disparities in education?

By Allen Quist

Everyone agrees there are major racial disparities in U.S. education. These disparities are accurately described in the following chart:

Race                Average score on the SAT test

Asian                                           598

White (excluding Hispanics)         534

Hispanic                                     457

Black                                          428

(Source: Brookings Institution, “Race gaps in SAT scores highlight inequality and hinder upward mobility,” 2-1-17)

The Marxists—those who are in the process of taking over U.S. education (see The Marxification of Education by James Lindsay; see also “Minnesota Teacher Licensing Standards” by Allen and Julie Quist and “Social Emotional Learning” by the same authors) —the Marxists say the reason for these inequities is white supremacy, rampant racism, and discrimination against racial minorities. We expect them to view the disparities this way because they see the world through a Marxist lens. That is, they divide the world into the ruling class (whites) versus the exploited classes (racial minorities). They then superimpose their Marxist worldview on the above information and all other information as well.  

But is racism the actual cause of these educational disparities? No, it is not. In the first place, there appears to be no scientific evidence to support the view that the racial disparities in educational test results are caused by discrimination by whites against minorities. It is merely an assumption, a false assumption, on the part of Marxists and others. Second, this supposed racism explanation for the disparities is inconsistent with other well-known and well-documented scientific information, especially information regarding the impact of single parenthood on the academic achievement of children.

Let’s take a look at the real problem, namely the lack of fathers in too many homes. According to the last U.S. census, there are major racial differences in the percentage of children being raised in single-parent homes. The percentages of single-parent homes according to race, are listed below:

Race                             % of children living with a single parent

Asian                                          10%

White (excluding Hispanics)         18%

Hispanic:                                    28%

Black:                                         51%

(Source: U.S. 2020 Census, “Number of children living only with their mother has doubled in the last 50 years.”) 

You will notice the strong correlation between the percentage of children identified by race who are living with a single parent and the percentage of children identified by race scoring below Asians on the SAT exam. That is, the higher the percentage of school children living in a single parent home, the lower these students score on the SAT test. In the social sciences it is extremely unusual to see correlations this obvious. These correlations mean that single parenthood is a major cause, perhaps the most significant cause, of the racial disparities in academic achievement tests. We can superimpose the SAT scores by race on top of the lack of fathers in the home identified by race—the two tables provide us with the same picture. 

This finding should not surprise us. The notion that the racial disparities in academic achievement are due to discrimination, the result of so-called white supremacy, is a political statement, not a scientific one. In contrast, the position that racial disparities in academic achievement are due to fatherless homes is a scientific statement, not a political one. It is actually a politically unpopular statement. 

In the field of logic there are canons—rules—for identifying causation. One of these rules is called “concomitant variation.” This rule means that if two phenomena vary in synchrony with each other, there is a causal relationship between them. The causal relationship between cigarette smoking and lung cancer was established this way. This rule is a well-established scientific methodology for proving causation. Based on this time-tested rule, we can conclude that single parenthood is a major causal factor in the racial disparities in students’ academic achievement. 

Numerous scientific studies have reached the same conclusion. Following is a sample of the conclusions from these studies:

Single parent families have become more and more common nowadays, thus, research revealed that children from this type of household will suffer academically as compared to those from two parent families.  [UK Essays, “The Effects of Single Parenthood on Children’s Academic Outcomes”]  

Even when they have the same academic abilities, children in single-parent families are three times more likely to drop out of high school than children from two-parent families. …. No matter which parent is missing, children from single-parent families generally find it more difficult to connect with school. [Gladney Center for Adoption: “Single parenting and children’s parenting and children’s academic achievement”]

. . . students from non-intact families continue to have three times the risk of suspension and double the risk of being held back a grade as students from married, biological families. [American Enterprise Institute, “Strong Families, Better Student Performance.”]

The above quotations are just a small sample from the many scientific studies that have concluded that students from two-parent families do substantially better in school on average than students from single-parent families. This is not to say that all children from single-parent households will do poorly. We are speaking of percentages, not individuals. But the author has been unable to locate any scientific studies which show that racial discrimination lowers academic achievement!  As mentioned above, the assertion that racism explains the differences in academic achievement of different races is a political position, not a scientific one. 

This information is earth shattering! It means that the overriding Marxist premise of dividing our nation into the ruling class and the exploited class is false. This means that the nonsensical Marxist construct of “white supremacy” (which alleges that all whites are inherently racist) is disproven. (White supremacy is also disproven by the Bible since it was written mostly, or entirely, by whites and no racism can be found on any of its 1700 or so pages.) If whites are inherently racist, we would find racism in the Bible. It’s not there.

Since single parenthood is a primary cause of the racial disparities in education, and since single parenthood has doubled in the last 50 years, what, then, is the cause in the rise of single parenthood? Obviously, there are many causes, but one of the main causal factors is anti-family government policies. For example, the “Affordable Care Act” (Obama Care) engages in massive discrimination against married people. This author discovered the written-into-law discrimination against married people 13 years ago. [WorldNetDaily, “It’s Back! Health-care plan redoubles “marriage penalty’” and Cmods, “Huge Marriage Penalty in House, Senate Health Care Bills,” 2010]

The discrimination against married people in this law is so extensive that only 17% of the health insurance premium subsidies in Obamacare go to married persons while 83% goes to parents who are single. If middle-income single persons in the system choose to marry, they will be required to pay thousands of dollars in extra premiums—thereby providing a huge incentive for people to remain single. In some cases, the extra premium when middle-income single parents marry is over $9,000 per year. How many people can afford to marry with that kind of extra cost? [Albert Lea Tribune, “The health care bill has a marriage penalty,” January 20, 2010.]

A short time after I published the Obama Care marriage penalty information, I was flagged down by an acquaintance at a local county fair. This man, a pastor at a local church, said to me, “Thank you for letting us know about the marriage penalty in Obama Care. I have a member who has been living with his girlfriend for several years. As his pastor I advised them to get married. In response he said, ‘If we were to marry, it would cost us an additional $5,000 each year for health insurance, and we don’t have that kind of money.’ Thanks for letting people know about the bad position we have been put in.”   

The leftists, who falsely allege that discrimination is the cause of the racial disparities in education, are actually a major cause of the disparities themselves by their anti-marriage, anti-family, policies—the marriage penalty being just one cause of many. Marxists want to weaken the family in any way they can, and they have succeeded to the point where single parenting has doubled in the last 50 years. We are not going to make progress in reducing the racial disparities in educational achievement until we deal with the real cause of the problem—until we adopt pro-marriage government policies and laws instead of the anti-marriage laws and policies that are now pervasive in our country.   

There are many other social ills that result from single parenting in addition to lower academic achievement. The following table highlights some others: 

U.S. children living in single parent homes make up—

63% of youths who commit suicide,

70% of the homeless or runaway children, 

85% of children with behavioral disorders,

And 75% of the children using illegal drugs.

Why is all this happening? Kendall Qualls answered that question when he said: 

 Enabled by welfare and other “Great Society” handouts, the resulting low academic scores, high incarceration rates and rampant unemployment confirm the massive negative impact progressive policies have had on black America. They’re policies . . . we will not fix until fathers once again lead black homes. (Take Charge Minnesota, “Black families need fathers, not reparations for slavery.”)

We will not make significant progress on any of these issues until we adopt pro-marriage and pro-family policies and laws. 

As indicated above, the significance of this information is profound. The Marxist thesis that our problems are the result of discrimination by whites is false. And here is the elephant in the living room: I once visited a single mom and her two kids. As I walked in, a four-year-old boy immediately wrapped his arms around my right leg. I picked him up and held him; he then wrapped his arms around my neck. As I sat down, I held him in my lap where he stayed for about an hour, and we had to remove his arms that were wrapped around me so I could exit. 

Here was a boy who was starved for a father-figure. For a very short time, I was a father-figure for the boy. Could it be that kids come into this world with the instinctive knowledge that a mother and father should welcome them? A Baltimore Oriole can build an amazingly complex nest with instinctive knowledge alone. Is it unreasonable that human beings have instinctive knowledge too? The Bible tells us that babies are born with instinctive knowledge of right and wrong (Romans 2:14-15). Could this instinctive knowledge include the realization that a family needs both a mother and a father? It sure looks like it.   

There are many other problems with American education today. These problems include a disastrous lack of discipline in our schools, the indoctrination of our kids with cultural Marxism instead of teaching them academic knowledge and skills, and teaching revisionist history instead of real history. All these maladies and others need immediate correction, and racial disparities is a huge problem as well. It won’t be solved until fathers are back in the home.

2 thoughts on “What is the cause of racial disparities in education?”

  1. The reason for racial disparities in SAT scores, income, etc. is due to differences in IQ. Not living in a stable two-parent family, good schools, good nutrition, etc. also are factors but not the main one. If we can’t tell the truth then all we’re doing is coming up with one excuse after another. There is plenty of documented evidence of racial differences in IQ’s in addition to several books on the topic.

  2. Avatar
    Recognizing Truth

    What’s the cause?
    Where to start…
    Affirmative action, critical race theory, perpetual victimhood indoctrination, and the root of all the evils: Taking God out of the schools and replacing Him with perversions.

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