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Stats Watch

Immigrant Students Close Education Gap

University Business, Sep 2005

A recently-published paper attempts to shatter economists' perceptions of the new immigration wave (post-1965). Since the 1980s, economists have depicted a negative picture of U.S. immigration: new immigrants were blamed for the decline in low-wage jobs, and vast differences between the languages and cultures of the new immigrants and natives prompted hostility from the general public. University of California, Berkeley economist David Card reports in Is the New Immigration Really So Bad? that children of immigrants do not harm the labor market opportunities of less-skilled natives, and despite the fear that these children may never assimilate, they have surprisingly closed much of the education gap with natives. See www.phil.frb.org/econ/conf/immigration/card.pdf.

--Julie A. Varughese

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