Every child deserves an opportunity to reach their full potential. But our education systems are collapsing under inequity, and it's mostly because of poverty. Students who experience severe economic obstacles perform worse than students who have access to more wealth.
To bridge these gaps and ensure that all children get a real chance at a fulfilling education, we need to address systemic racism and poverty as tangible barriers to learning and future achievement.
Every Black student deserves access to great teaching, equitable resources, and a safe learning environment from grade school classrooms to college campuses. Black students matter and working on their behalf has never been more urgent.
Students need family and community engagement and resources that encourage physical and mental health for their overall well-being, which allows for stronger academic development. We work to expand access to high-quality learning experiences throughout the education continuum and accelerate community-driven approaches to build stable, enriching public education systems.
College and workforce success
We support students getting the education and skills development they need, so they can be successful on the job or in an academic environment. College costs should be affordable. Forgiving student loan debt and decreasing the overall cost of college is an economic imperative.
Racial justice in education
We need strategies and investments that build accountability to advance the success of children of color. Black children deserve to experience culturally relevant, student-centered learning — not extreme punishments or hallways staffed with police officers. We work to expand policies and interventions that equip families and communities to better support their kids' needs in school.
An end to the school-to-prison pipeline
Police officers don't make schools safer. But police presence in schools does increase the likelihood that Black students will be introduced to the legal system and then remain in it. In 43 states and the District of Columbia, Black students are more likely to be arrested than other students while at school — often with devastating effects to the child and their life trajectory.
Biden's Student Loan Debt Relief Plan has the potential to close the racial wealth gap because Black families are more likely to have student loan debt and less likely to have the resources to repay it. Our student loan forgiveness toolkit explains what Black people need to know to benefit from the plan.
Student loans and Black graduates
Federal student loan default rates are 6 times higher among black graduates.More on Inclusive Economy
Many of us take out massive amounts of debt for more education just to be met with under-paying employers and massive monthly debt payments.- Akia C., Connecticut State NAACP Youth and College Division President
The student debt crisis has a disproportionate impact on Black borrowers and their families. Across all racial groups, Black borrowers hold the most student loan debt despite also being consistently underserved by postsecondary institutions.
President Joe Biden has canceled up to $20,000 in federal student debt for Pell Grant recipients and $10,000 for other borrowers making less than $125,000 per year. The repayment pause is extended to June 30, 2023, but when payments restart, they will be capped at 5% of the borrower's monthly income.
You voted and rallied - and it's because of you we've seen this first step in student debt relief. Let's keep going.
Sign up for upcoming trainings with NAACP and the U.S. Department of Education about how to take advantage of student debt forgiveness programs.
Now that some student debt forgiveness has been announced, let us know: What does this relief mean to you?
Sign up for student debt relief updates directly from the U.S. Department of Education.