It's just not possible for the average kid who comes to this country in seventh or eighth grade, or even third grade, without a word of English and parents with little formal education, to match the achievement levels of kids whose mom has a Ph.D. in English from Stanford and can afford to stay home and spend time supplementing the education of her kid. [Original article here.]True, we can't move all kids to the same level. That isn't, actually, the important goal.
The important goal is to move very nearly all kids to a good level, and the remaining few much closer than they are now. We can equip them, consistently, to be effective citizens. We can close the gap between current performance and systematically sturdy results.
What our teachers do matters. How we support our teachers matters. What we do together, in this generation, matters for the future we will all share.