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4:09 pm
Wed April 30, 2014

Tulane Report About Poverty And Education In New Orleans Defies Expectations

A new Cowen Institute report says that school performance scores have risen since Katrina, despite a rise in poverty during the same time period.
Bindaas Madhavi Flickr

Tulane University’s Cowen Institute released a report Wednesday about poverty and educational outcomes in New Orleans, with some unexpected results.

Eighty-four percent of students in New Orleans are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch, an indicator of poverty. And that number has grown by 9 percent since Katrina.

And yet, the average school performance score in New Orleans rose 41 percent during that same period.

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Poverty In America: The Struggle To Get Ahead
2:02 pm
Fri July 13, 2012

Struggling Families Lift Themselves Out Of Poverty

Support group members Pamela Travis (from left), Dominique Martin, Yovanda Dixon, Shanna Chaney and Ramona Shewl hold a meeting as part of the Family Independence Initiative. The Oakland nonprofit encourages low-income families to form small groups to help each other get ahead.
Pam Fessler NPR

Originally published on Fri July 13, 2012 9:24 pm

It's been almost 50 years since President Lyndon Johnson declared a "War on Poverty." But today, the poverty rate in the U.S. is the highest it's been in 17 years, affecting some 46 million people.

The economy is partly to blame, but even in good times, millions of Americans are poor.

That's been a longtime concern for Maurice Lim Miller. He ran social service programs in the San Francisco Bay Area for 20 years. Then one day, the painful truth hit.

"The very first kids I had trained back in the early '80s, I saw their kids now showing up in my programs," he says.

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