Today, U.S. Department of Education Secretary John King announced the launch of a new federal program that will be a foundational step in identifying educational opportunity gaps, and targeting support to improve the college and career readiness of underserved Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) students and English learners.
The investment of 1 million dollars to the AAPI Data Disaggregation Initiative will encourage state educational agencies to obtain and evaluate disaggregated data on English learners and AAPI subpopulations beyond the existing 7 racial and ethnic categories.
AAPIs are the fastest growing racial group. With this rapid growth comes rich cultural and linguistic diversity. AAPIs take trace their heritage to more than 320 countries and racial groups, and speak more than 100 languages.
In reality, the AAPI community is not a monolithic group. Disaggregated data demonstrate that some AAPI subgroups face greater challenges than aggregated data suggests.
Disaggregated data will help us target resources where they’re most needed, such as high schools where almost half of Cambodians aren’t earning a diploma, or in communities where the average per capita income of Hmong Americans is lower than any racial group nationwide.
Improving the current practice of data collection, which aggregates AAPI subgroup data and masks disparities of underserved AAPI communities, ranks among our highest priorities in the context of education.
For information on the 2016 Asian American and Pacific Islander Data Disaggregation Initiative Grant Competition, please visit the applicant information page.