The poorest school districts receive an average 36% less federal funding than the wealthiest.
Yes, you read that right.
Not only do poorest and most underserved school districts in the US get neglected by local municipalities, they also get less federal government funding than the wealthiest.
Take Chicago Ridge Schools--a community with more than 30% living below the poverty line. It received just enough funding to spend $9,794 on each student (well below the national average of $11,850).
Yet an hour away sits Ronduot School in a wealthy suburban neighborhood that spends almost $29,000 on each of its 145 students.
Plenty of things. An underfunded school cannot adequately prepare their students for the professional workforce, which in turn makes the community less appealing to businesses.
With little business investments/ventures and low property value, poor districts simply don't have the tax revenue to fund their school, which cycles back into continuing the vicious cycle of underfunded schools.
What's even more scary is that this cycle of dilapidated schools is the fuel to the poverty cycle in the US. Students from poor communities are ensnared in a financial trap that takes generations to escape.
Why is funding for a school so important?
It's not unheard of for schools to use a history teacher to teach math because they don't have the money to hire more.
Better funded schools can afford more teachers with more experience and knowledge--and in turn increasing the quality of education for its students.
From history textbooks that still lists USSR as a country to biology textbooks that are missing half of its pages, underfunded schools struggle to provide the basic materials for success in the classroom.
Well-funded districts can also afford equipment like personal laptops that aids in learning--something that underfunded districts can't possible afford.
Wealthy districts can afford to run higher-level courses like calculus, which in turn prepares their students to face college-level classes to creates more opportunities to allow student to explore their passion.
Underfunded districts don't even have the budget to run the most basic courses--much less considering better classes for their students.
Violence, bullying, and harassment is more prevalent in underfunded schools where there are not enough teachers and school administrators to enforce a code of conduct.
Students who has to go school in fear of being hurt physically can't possibly learn well and think creatively.
How are we helping?
We believe that every child deserves a good education. Across the US, we work tirelessly to help children in poor communities achieve more and realize their full potential.
We have made important impacts on school districts across the country. For a more detailed view on our impacts, please click below: