Education is a fundamental aspect of any civilized nation. The goal of public education in America is to turn uninformed children into knowledgeable citizens who are fully capable of participating in a society driven by democracy and economics. Students drop out every year by the hundreds of thousands, and those who remain receive a less than satisfactory educational experience due to lack of funding, inadequate teachers, and flawed educational strategies. Americans must improve school funding and increase teacher pay to ensure all students receive quality primary and secondary education as well as reduce remediation and drop out rates through improved learning standards, effective assessment tools, and early-college initiatives that prepare students for college and the workforce.
One major affliction of the American public education system is money, or the lack thereof, and the impact funding inequality has on educational quality. Benjamin Barber, in his article “America Skips School,” says the federal government only funds about 5% of public education (121). Public school funding comes primarily from local property taxes, meaning suburban schools can have up to twice as much money to spend on education than those in urban areas (Barber 122). Increasing federal financial aid in public schools could solve the problem of funding inequality by providing lower income schools with more available resources without taking money from other schools or increasing local taxes. Increasing funds would allow schools to provide better facilities and repair “leaky, broken-down habitats” often found in impoverished school districts. More money would allow all schools to hire better teachers and improve ...
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... high schools incapable of providing adequate college preparation (Tremaine, par.2). Schools participating in various early college initiatives have seen high school graduates earn an associates degree and a diploma simultaneously (Tremaine, par.5), with university acceptance rates as high as 98% (Tremaine, par.7).
The public education system faces a number of problems including funding shortages, college remediation, and high drop out rates. If children are expected to become productive members of society, it is the responsibility of all citizens to make sure students have the tools necessary to succeed. Without well paid, competent educators, substantial resources, and effective academic strategies, the institution that provides free and equal education for all is liable to fall, leaving America's future generations economically and democratically disadvantaged.
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