Thursday, May 15, 2014

Wealth Gap Show in Latest NCAA Academic Numbers - Higher Education

Wealth Gap Show in Latest NCAA Academic Numbers - Higher Education: INDIANAPOLIS ― The money gap at Division I colleges is continuing to show up on the playing fields and in the classrooms.

Thirty-six teams will be banned from the 2014-15 postseason because of sub-par scores on the newest Academic Progress Rate, which was released Wednesday. Not one of them comes from a power conference. And of the 17 football and men’s basketball teams, eight are from historically Black colleges and universities. Alabama State and Florida A&M made the list in both sports.

Even the NCAA recognizes the disparity now.

“While the low-resource institutions are overrepresented among the population (postseason bans) we’re talking about today, they’ve made improvement, they’ve made significant improvement as a group,” said Walter Harrison, chairman of the NCAA’s committee on academic performance. “They’re just starting at a lower spot. We’re trying to help them with some advice and some financing.”

The NCAA has awarded approximately $4.3 million over the last three years to low-resource schools, defined as those ranking in the bottom 15 percent in funding. The money is intended to help fund extra tutoring or other academic resources that could help keep student-athletes on track to graduate.