Advance Illinois Statement on Education Trust’s “Segregation Forever” Report
CHICAGO, IL (July 23, 2020) At Advance Illinois, we know that the future viability of our state relies on an education system that works to overcome historic inequities by providing exceptional opportunities for all students. However, a recent report published by the Education Trust reveals a persistent and severe underrepresentation of Black and Latino students in higher education. The report, “Segregation Forever,” shows that the representation of Black and Latino students in the country’s top public colleges and universities has decreased or remained disproportionately low in the past 20 years.
We are deeply concerned to learn that, according to the report, the enrollment of Black students at some of Illinois’ top public universities has decreased over the last 20 years. According to the report’s methodology for evaluating student representation, both the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) earned grades of ‘F’ for Black enrollment. And while UIC should be commended for maintaining its ‘A’ rating for Latino enrollment, UIUC earned an ‘F’ rating for Latino enrollment.
While we have stellar public institutions in Illinois, these scores are a clear reminder that they, as well as public education advocates and policymakers, have much more work to do to ensure that these campuses reflect the diverse population of the state. Using this study and other tools as guideposts, Advance Illinois will continue to work with our partners in education and civil rights to advocate for greater access, enrollment, retention and completion of Black and Latino students in state-funded colleges and universities. Together, we must do all that we can to increase the presence of diverse students on our college campuses.
About Advance Illinois
Advance Illinois is an independent policy and advocacy organization working toward a health public education system that enables all students to achieve success in college, career and civic life. Since its founding in 2008, Advance Illinois has become a nationally recognized thought leader in education policy advocacy. To learn more visit advanceillinois.org.
Roderick K. Hawkins, Communications Director
José L. García, Communications Associate