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How does poverty affect education?
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- Poorer students may face condition in their homes conditions that leaves them less time and energy for studies. This problem can become serious if conditions are so bad that they dong get adequate nourishment.
- Poorer students are likely to have parents, family members and neighbours who are also less educated. Such student are not able to get much guidance for their education in their homes. This situation may further get aggravated if they have only one parent or the parents are too busy to spend time with their children.
- Education is also aided by general exposure to the world in general. Poorer student are likely to have less of such exposure. For example, they are less likely to travel much in their holidays.
eNoter, Dean's List
Poor children who don't eat a nourishing breakfast will not be able to pay attention in class and so they may become fidgety...
Poverty can lead to low self esteem. Children from poverty stricken homes are quick to notice that other children dress better than they do and they can become embarrassed which can cause them to withdraw in class which creates a bad learning environment.
If there is poverty in the home children are not to participate in some activities which fosters team work and binding with your peers, if there is a cost incurred.
Posted by itssnigdha on October 20, 2009 at 11:52 PM (Answer #2)
Middle School Teacher
The previous post examines the issue quite well from the student's point of view. From an institutional and structural valence, poverty impacts education in a variety of ways. Initially, areas that are economically challenged can feature sub- standard facilities, such as buildings, grounds, classrooms, and textbooks. Students, especially older ones, begin to see this feature in their educational worlds and it creates for a disparity between the opportunity ideology, which stresses what should be done, and the reality of the situation, stressing what is. Additionally, there is a likelihood that schools which are immersed in conditions which constitute poverty might not be able to place immediate primacy on educational needs, as other and more pressing economic realities might drive the attention and focus of stakeholders. Finally, with standards based educational reform manifested through initiatives such as No Child Left Behind, solutions to help students meet or exceed state standards might not be able to present themselves as readily. For example, if a school is in an impoverished area and cannot afford to do so, tutoring programs and other types of assistance might have to be sacrificed, impacting the overall quality of a child's educational needs.
Posted by akannan on October 21, 2009 at 3:05 AM (Answer #3)
High School Teacher
I'd like to add to both posts that although we have free K-12 education, poverty sets students at a disadvantage for higher education. Students may have to get a job to help support their family, affecting the hours they sleep and work on their homework. This can harm grades, and subsequently harm chances of going to a highly ranked school. Also, students who are socio-economically disadvantaged may not have internet access, & may not perform as well on standardized tests. Imagine, if your family can afford to spend $100 on a prep book or course for the SATs or AP exams, you will most likely be better prepared than someone who cannot. Similarly, students may have to pick and choose what exams they can actually take. If one is taking 5 AP exams in one year, even with fee reductions, the price adds up. Finally, students who are living with poverty will be at a disadvantage when applying to college, because they must consider price. They will need to work harder than their peers in order to gain merit-based scholarships. You might argue that all students can take out loans to pay for their education. Even if they are accepted and take out loans to pay, they will automatically be economically disadvantaged when they graduate, because they will be tens of thousands of dollars in debt, whereas students from wealthier families may be able to pay without taking out loans and incurring debt.
Posted by MaudlinStreet on October 21, 2009 at 6:07 AM (Answer #4)
High School Teacher
As the previous posts mentioned, poverty literally affects all aspects of a child's life. Whether it be the student having to take on adult responsibilities leaving little time for school work or a child moving from school to school with no continuity in education because his caretaker cannot maintain a permanent place to live. On a personal note, simply trying to contact the caregivers of impoverished students is difficult because I often reach disconnected numbers or send information to old addresses (there is usually not e-mail contact available). If I cannot contact a parent to let him/her know about the struggles of a student or improvements, it has an extremely negative effect on the student and his/her progress in school.
Posted by scarletpimpernel on October 21, 2009 at 12:33 PM (Answer #5)
Lack of money to pay for the education expenses is just one of the many factors that limit the ability of individuals to continue their study and do well in their study. Some of these factors are as follows.
Posted by krishna-agrawala on October 23, 2009 at 6:34 AM (Answer #6)
High School Teacher
If you have never read the works of Dr. Ruby Payne, you should. She has dedicated a large portion of her life studying the affects of poverty on students. What she explains is that not only do children suffer the economic issues that go along with poverty, but they suffer when they and others with whom they interact do not understand the rules that go along with each socio-economic class.
So in actuality, it's the unspoken and unwritten rules of the different classes that affect the student in a more critical way. Schools are operated from a middle class set of rules, and if a student is enduring generational poverty (poverty that is ongoing from one generation to the next) vs. situational poverty (unemployment, divorce, death) it is entirely possible that s/he will not know the unspoken and unwritten rules that govern the middle class.
One brief example of the difference an unspoken rule of the poverty class might be that they will physically fight to settle a dispute over a grievance. Whereas the middle class unspoken rule is to talk it out or pursue it through legal means.
Posted by ask996 on October 28, 2009 at 11:25 AM (Answer #7)
Middle School Teacher
I think poverty's impact on education probably depends in large measure on whether it is situational or generational poverty. The poverty experienced by a newly divorced mother struggling to provide for her children without a husband is somewhat different from that experienced by a child of the inner city whose parent(s) and grandparent(s) have perhaps never known anything else. In either case, however, it is difficult for a parent to prioritize a child's education when he or she is struggling daily to simply put food on the table. If a parent is working two jobs, for example, the child may spend much time alone after school, with no one to supervise or help with homework, or even fix dinner. The child may come to school fatigued, if no one was there to see that he or she got to bed on time, and in the poorest households, whether or not someone was there to fix dinner may be a moot point if there is no money for food. To say that a child should just learn to want a better life for him or herself is a vast oversimplification of a complicated problem because he or she may not be aware that there is a better life anywhere. Even if he or she were, the connection between education and attaining a better life may seem abstract at best, or just plain impossible at worst. However, I think we have to be careful not to assume that all poor people, and their circumstances, are exactly alike, either. There are patterns and rules, but poor people's individual situations vary just as anyone else's situation might differ from his or her neighbor's.
Posted by lhc on October 31, 2009 at 4:53 PM (Answer #8)
High School Teacher
In Florida, many inner-city schools with students from lower-class, poverty-stricken families receive "F" grades due to their less than satisfactory FCAT scores, due in part to the students' poor educational skills and training. The "F" grades result in less state funding and further embarrassment to the students, teachers and administrators, who are branded as failures.
Posted by bullgatortail on November 2, 2009 at 8:51 PM (Answer #9)
Poverty definitely makes a difference to education. Students must have their basic needs met before they are able to learn. If a student is not sure where their next meal is coming from or where they are staying tonight, learning is not very important to them.
Posted by lrwilliams on October 16, 2010 at 6:24 PM (Answer #10)
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