A decade after the U.S. Supreme Court made affirmative action the law of the land, "the cultural zeitgeist has changed," said Peter Sacks, author of "Tearing Down the Gates: Confronting the Class Divide in American Education." Now, he and others report that class is having a greater effect in driving inequality than race. With the Supreme Court expected to consider affirmative action again at the end of the month, some say there could be a shift to aiding students who are socioeconomically disadvantaged -- regardless of their race.

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