The Coleman Report at 50: Its Legacy and Enduring Value

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1966 Equality of Educational Opportunity Report, now commonly known as the Coleman Report, Johns Hopkins University will assemble leading experts to engage with research and policy questions related to the educational opportunity of the nation’s children.

Designed to document differences between schools with varying degrees of segregation by race and socioeconomic status, the Coleman Report was the most ambitious application of survey research methodologies on education policy of its time, inspiring decades of research on school effects, on the impact of socioeconomic status on achievement, and on racial and ethnic disparities in academic achievement. A conference will be designed to reflect on how understanding of equity in education has advanced since the report, how research methods have evolved, and what has been learned about how research can inform practice and policy. In addition, a set of commissioned papers by leading experts will be developed to address the report’s methods and conclusions through the lens of advances in social sciences over the past half century. The release of this special publication will coincide with the conference, to be hosted at Johns Hopkins in October 2015. The Russell Sage Foundation will support and host a pre-conference meeting to share draft papers and plan the conference, and will fund the work of experts involved in the publication.