Discuss the inherent need for why a "right to education" was necessary.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The inherent need for a "right to education" was implicit in the passage of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA.)  President Johnson, a former educator himself and one who worked in the most impoverished of areas in Texas, teaching mostly Mexican children.  A student at Southwest Teachers College, Johnson understood the need for education to be considered as a necessary right for all of America's children.  Johnson understood the effects of children who did not have educational access and recognized the fundamental doors that were closed to them as a result.  He was also following a line of Presidents who also advocated education as being critical for America's future.  Truman and Kennedy both saw the need to increase funding and support of math and science programs as being essential for the United States to compete with the Soviet Union in the Cold War.  The implication here was that America does not succeed if there are elements where the poor and marginalized are denied access to quality education.  Out of this general consensus, the ESEA was passed in the hopes of ensuring that equal access to quality education would be something that all children in America could see as a right.  The fact that the creation of Title I funding was meant to help economically disadvantaged areas helps to bring forth this idea that education was becoming seen as a right and not a privilege for the few.  The law goes very far in ensuring that there is federal monetary support to ensure that no child is denied an education, creating the legislative version of a "right to education."

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