For years the image of who drives change in our democracy has reflected an old narrative of straight white men in smoky rooms. 

The Beat DC blows through that trope. 

We’re the only daily political news platform that highlights the people of color driving policy in the nation’s capital and beyond, and the policies that impact communities of color at large. 

State Universities Enrolling Fewer Black Students 

State Universities Enrolling Fewer Black Students 

Amid budget cuts and attacks on affirmative action, elite public colleges are enrolling fewer Black students than they were a generation ago. The percent of selective colleges that reported considering race in admissions dropped from 60% in 1994 to 35% in 2014, according to a study by researchers at the University of Toronto and Brown University. In another report, Mark Huelson took a look at the enrollment of Black students across 67 selective public institutions -- including UCLA, Georgia Tech, Clemson, and William & Mary -- across the past 20 years. He found that nearly half of these schools are enrolling a lower percentage of Black students than they were in the mid-1990s. Nationally, one in six college-age people are Black, but there is only one African American among every 20 students at large, elite public schools. These decreases are happening as Black high-school graduation rates have increased across the country, dramatically in many states, creating a far more diverse pool of students. In 2016, the University of Virginia’s student body was 6.5% Black, down from 10.2% in 1996, and despite Black students making up 23.6% of Virginia’s high-school graduating class. In Mississippi, over half of all high-school graduates are Black, but Blacks comprise only 13% of undergrads at the University of Mississippi. Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Illinois all have double-digit differences in the number of Black high-school graduates in their states and the percentage of Black students enrolled in state flagship campuses. As state funding has stagnated or declined on a per-student basis, colleges are under immense pressure to extract more revenue from other sources, including students themselves. The result can be greater recruitment of out-of-state, international students, or wealthy in-state students who do not require need-based financial aid. This reduces the number of spots for poor or middle-class students of color. Read the full report here.

Susana Martínez Joins Foundation for Excellence in Education

Susana Martínez Joins Foundation for Excellence in Education

Ro Khanna and Brenda Lawrence Intro Guidance on Artificial Intelligence 

Ro Khanna and Brenda Lawrence Intro Guidance on Artificial Intelligence