Posts Tagged ‘public schools’

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Special mention

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Yes, that’s right: for the first time in at least 50 years, a majority of U.S. public school students come from low-income families.

The Southern Education Foundation reports that 51 percent of students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade in the 2012-2013 school year were eligible for the federal program that provides free and reduced-price lunches. In 40 of the 50 states, low income students comprised no less than 40 percent of all public schoolchildren. In 21 states, children eligible for free or reduced-price lunches were a majority of the students in 2013.

As we know, a small minority at the top are doing much better during the course of the current recovery. But a large group at the bottom are not doing better at all. They have no option but to send their children to public schools, which are then charged with the responsibility of creating equal opportunity for poor children.

That’s the American way. We permit the growth of grotesque inequalities in our society and then demand that public schools solve all the problems that stem from those inequalities.

But they can’t. No matter how hard public-school teachers try.