The project: Educational Opportunity in Massachusetts is a research-practice partnership between researchers at Brown and Harvard Universities and the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. We study the broad effects of educational reform in the Commonwealth and the ways that the public PK-12 and higher education systems promote and constrain opportunity for students from all backgrounds. Using integrated data from several state agencies, we follow students’ progress through the educational pipeline and entry into the labor force. Our work focuses on educational inequality and the consequences of standards-based reform.

The data: We use longitudinal, student-level data from school years 2002-present and grades PK-12. We link this information to data about students’ college enrollment and graduation via the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education and the National Student Clearinghouse, as well as to earnings data from the Massachusetts Unemployment Insurance system.