By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Some say that you can tell if students get a good education by their zip codes and a new study by Jonathan Rothwell at the Brookings Institution identified areas where high levels of economic segregation show the large gaps between low-income students and other students.

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Nationwide, a low-income student attends a school that scores at the 42nd percentile on state exams, while the average high-income student attends a school that scores at the 61st percentile.

The gaps are even wider between black and Latino students and white students with the highest school test-score gaps in the Northeast metro areas.

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If the housing-cost gap were reduced by eliminating exclusionary zoning in metro areas it would lower the test-score gap by a significant percentage between schools serving low-income versus higher-income students.

The report calls for public policies on housing regulations that prohibit only affluent children in high-scoring public schools thereby promoting greater opportunity for all kids.

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Read the report and summary at Brookings.edu.