OPINION: The state of poverty and education


Poverty has been prevalent for a long time, and a few of us experienced it during the year of 2020. Based on the Bureau of labor statistics, the unemployment rate went up from 4.4% in March, 2020 to 14.7% in April, 2020. This was a time when the pandemic was first introduced to the United States. While the unemployment rate eventually did go down again, the fact that a lot of families experienced a crisis still stands. In order to prevent further problems, better education would be needed.

But even before this global crisis existed, there are other factors that have been around for a while that have affected poverty rates. The organization Concernusa states that a few reasons poverty exists is because of malnutrition, poor healthcare especially for mothers and children, lack of education, lack of jobs and a lack of reserves.

All of the topics that Concernusa mentions are all able to improve in the United States. One thing that stands out the most is education. With proper education for everyone, it is more likely that we are able to solve more problems even outside of poverty. Poverty, especially in underdeveloped countries stem from poor education that results in a high amount of offspring and malnutrition. According to Pew Research, the average person living in a household is larger in sub-saharan Africa and Middle East-North Africa regions with an average of over 6 people in a household while developed regions like North America and Europe have around 3.

Marriages that end in divorce and an increase in births to unwed mothers both contribute to the poverty rates as well. Single parents have a harder time taking care of children because children can not take care of themselves, but parents still need to provide necessities for their children. An article on NPR said, “Women have lost more jobs than men during the recession, and others are quitting their jobs in frustration from the demands of child care. However, quitting is just not an option for most single parents.” In order to prevent situations such as these that incite poverty, better education is needed.

According to the School of Education Online, 5 ways to improve the quality of education include preventing overcrowding, making funding schools a priority, addressing the school-to-prison pipeline and raising standards for teachers.

Overcrowding prevents individual students from getting the attention that they may need. Not enough funding for schools can slow down the progress of our education system making our population wait longer to have a proper education. Addressing the school-to-prison pipeline is important because building a community where students are not encouraged to do crime will help the community as a whole. Finally, raising standards for teachers is important because students are exposed to one teacher for about an hour a day, good role models and proper execution of education is important for children’s growth.

It is not easy to fix all the world’s problems, but with high quality education we are able to minimize them to the best of our abilities. Jobs and great inventions are created from intelligent people. Without education, it is hard to achieve anything as a society.