Sociologists argue that there are five types of institutions in any society. These are family, government, economy, education and religion. So the task now is to think about how one or more of these could contribute to the problem of poverty.
In the United States, our system of education clearly contributes to the problem of poverty. This is because schools are funded on a local basis. This means that schools in poor areas are poorly funded and are, therefore, typically substandard. Students from poor families go to substandard schools and are therefore more likely to remain poor themselves.
In this way, the US educational system is one social institution that contributes to the problem of poverty.