Educational Testing Service (ETS) Achievement Gap conferences gather top researchers, policy experts and educators to discuss ways to improve educational attainment, how to close achievement gaps and suggestions for research, practice, assessment and public policy.

Saturdays at ETS Series

Taking Action: Navigating the Common Core State Standards and Assessments

February 9, 2013
Princeton, N.J.

Implementation of the Common Core State Standards will offer many challenges to educators and students, but none more so than to historically underserved communities, many of whom lack resources and effective teachers. The symposium, titled "Taking Action: Navigating the Common Core State Standards and Assessments," was the third in a series of Saturdays at ETS and co-convened by ETS and the National Urban League.

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Advancing Success for Black Men in College

June 23, 2014
National Press Club
Washington, D.C.

ETS co-convened this symposium with the Children's Defense Fund (CDF) to examine the opportunities and challenges that postsecondary education presents for young Black men, as well as discuss evidence and generate solutions that can help lead to greater success. Along with research, examples and expertise, the symposium featured anecdotes from Black men who have succeeded at accessing, affording and completing college.

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Black Male Teens: Moving to Success in the High School Years

June 24, 2013
Washington, D.C.

ETS convened this symposium with the Children's Defense Fund (CDF) to discuss the potentially perilous high school years of 1.7 million young Black men ages 14–18 as they prepare for postsecondary education and careers.

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Advancing Equity: Removing Roadblocks to Achieving High Academic Standards

November 4–5, 2011
Princeton, N.J.

At this symposium, scientific experts and education stakeholders grappled with the academic, fiscal and program investments — including standards and structures — necessary to fully achieve equitable educational opportunity.

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Climbing the Academic Achievement Ladder: Promoting the Success of Black Males

November 13, 2010
Princeton, N.J.

This ETS symposium focused on how to increase student effort and motivation, and encourage Black males to strive toward high academic performance and success. It recognized valuable research and programs on Black male achievement and ways to broaden the attention toward continuing progress.

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Salzburg Global Seminar

Optimizing Talent: Educational and Social Mobility Gaps Worldwide

October 2–7, 2012

This international conference centered on "Higher Education and Lifelong Learning" around the world, and concluded a three-part series designed by ETS in partnership with the Salzburg Global Seminar. The series aimed to review, refine and articulate the agenda for closing educational and social mobility gaps worldwide. Follow Salzburg Global Seminar on Twitter at @salzburgglobal.

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Middle School Matters: Improving the Life Course of Black Boys

July 23–24, 2012
Cincinnati, Ohio

This symposium, convened by ETS and the Children's Defense Fund (CDF), was held during the CDF's conference "Pursuing Justice for Children and the Poor with Urgency and Persistence: A Community and Youth Empowerment." The purpose of this conference was to highlight the special challenges facing Black boys ages 9–13 and to examine the most effective practices in schools that can help close achievement gaps and foster academic success.

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Quality — Inequality Quandary: Transacting Learning Relevance & Teacher Education in South Asia

April 4–5, 2012
Lahore, Pakistan

This conference addressed the challenges of curriculum/learning relevance and inequality (early years to secondary education) reflected in learning outcomes and assessment studies. It explored good practices and policies for bridging the inequality gaps, as well as innovative financing options for addressing the quality-inequality gaps.

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Optimizing Talent: Closing Educational and Social Mobility Gaps Worldwide

December 6–11, 2011
Salzburg, Austria

This session discussed where educational and social mobility gaps exist, what effect they have, why they persist and what can be done to eliminate them.

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A Strong Start: Positioning Young Black Boys for Educational Success

June 14, 2011
Washington, D.C.

This ETS symposium was devoted to the issues facing Black boys in their early years. ETS partnered with the Children's Defense Fund to explore the challenges facing this vulnerable population, as well as the opportunities to position young Black boys for educational success.

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The Family: America's Smallest School

October 18, 2010
Washington, D.C.

This ETS symposium discussed ETS's published report "The Family: America's Smallest School" which explored the status and role of the family in education. This symposium gathered researchers, policy experts, educators and practitioners to explore today's realities and tomorrow's solutions.

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Advancing Learning for Our Diverse Adult Population

March 3, 2010
Washington, D.C.

This ETS symposium concentrated on ways to improve educational levels, ideas for closing achievement gaps and suggestions for research, practice, assessment and public policy. It was co-convened by the American Association of Community Colleges and the Council of Adult and Experiential Learning, and featured presentations by academics, policy advocates and government officials.

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