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Socio-Economic Impacts on Education Level

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Introduction

It is worth noting that the system of education in a country plays a pivotal role in the distribution of human resources to various professional positions. As such, the education system is responsible for sorting people in accordance with their valued differences. Eventually, the education system channels individuals to various spheres of training, in order to build up their competence. This is crucial in inspiring people to achieve their dream occupations in accordance with their in-built talents (Holmes, 2006).

However, there is a number of factors that influence the eventual occupational attainments of individuals other than their abilities. This may be in the form of the value of education accessible in a particular country or region, which an individual dwells in. Additionally, diversities in attitudes, access to educational facilities, and differences in the willingness of the parents may also play a big role.

Socio-economic Status

By and large, socioeconomic status is one of the factors that greatly influence the kind of investment one does in education. The lack of investment in education is connected to lack of financial ability as well as the value placed on education. An individual’s education is closely linked to their life chances, wellbeing as well as income. It is, therefore, of great importance for one to clearly comprehend what limits or increases an individual’s accomplishment of apposite education.

It is also worth noting that the kind of family background an individual is brought up in has great influence on one’s academic performance. This is largely because research indicates that the socioeconomic status, size of a family, parental participation, and the home environment can go a long way in affecting the performance of a student (Ingrum, 2006).

Studies indicate that the attainment of college education tend to be greatly influenced by the socioeconomic status of an individual. In most cases, children who come from economically disadvantaged homes tend to find it difficult to pursue higher education (Holmes, 2006). In many ways, the social class of an individual determines whether a student will eventually graduate from college or not.

The family’s socioeconomic class has a great impact on attainment of higher education levels. In most cases, families from lower socioeconomic classes end up obtaining less resources and, therefore, less human capital. As a result, it becomes very difficult for them to pass on anything substantial to their children. This causes such children to be involuntarily underprivileged (Ingrum, 2006).

On the whole, when there implements low familial investment in a child’s human capital, chances are that such a child may end up dropping out of high school or college. This means that lower socioeconomic status of parents has the effect of decreasing the probability of a student’s completion of high school of college.

Additionally, it is just obvious that parents from a lower socioeconomic status most likely have less human capital to assist their children to pursue higher education. The problem is further compounded when a child has learning disabilities (Ingrum, 2006). This i because such a parent may not marshal enough resources to assist their children to rise above a learning disability. As a matter of fact, due to scarcity of resources, such parents may not even realize that their young ones are suffering and so should be assisted (Ingrum, 2006).

In most cases, individuals with less investment in education cannot fairly compete with those with higher education. Therefore, assuming that parents with lesser academic achievements have a low regard for education, their young ones will obviously also place a lower value on education. Consequently, chances are that they will very easily drop out of school.

Effect on the Society

There is always a connection between low socioeconomic status and lower education, poor health, and poverty. This eventually affects the society as a whole. All over the world, there are inequalities in the distribution of wealth, resources, as well as the quality of life. When a child is brought up in a poor background, such a child will definitely acquire language skills more slowly. This will eventually contribute to a delay in the phonological awareness; thereby putting the child’s reading skills at risk (Ingrum, 2006).

On the other hand, it is evident that children who hail from higher socioeconomic status environments are most likely to be in a position of being better placed when it comes to academic capabilities. In most cases, children from lower socioeconomic status join high schools with lower grades, and eventually learn less during the period of four years that they are in school (Holmes, 2006).

Poverty and Education

Students who come from families living in poverty are at a greater risk of lack of food, homelessness, teen parenthood, family stress, and, eventually, academic failure (Forsyth & Furlong, 2003). As a result, such children will most likely be affected in the pursuit for higher education. For instance, the moment a student fails to eat for a number of days, he/she cannot be expected to remain focused in a classroom. They cannot be at par with those from affluent families. In some cases, they join school behind those not living in comparable conditions (Ingrum, 2006).

In the United States, it has become increasingly difficult for poor students to climb the ladder of success. This is mainly because the policies pursued by most of the governments do little to decrease the gap between the rich and the poor (ACER, 2003). It is only the large corporations that benefit from the fiscal structure, with profits being maximized by low wages paid out to the workforce.

Additionally, a number of schools are usually segregated in accordance with the socioeconomic status. The research indicates that in schools with high population of students from poor families, the curriculum provided is usually constricted and less content is covered (Jerrim & Micklewright, 2009).

The situation is also worsened by lack of teacher experience. This is due to the fact that schools with high population of poor students have fewer qualified teachers (Forsyth & Furlong, 2003). They are also bound to lose those they already have at a very high rate. Eventually, students from lower socioeconomic status have a greater chance of being taught by ann inexperienced teacher. This results in poor performance when compared to the ones from a higher socioeconomic status (Jerrim & Micklewright, 2009).

Dropout Rates

The dropout among students in the United States is approximately 10%. There are several factors that contribute to such a rate of dropout in schools; one of the key factors is the socioeconomic status. Students from low income families are usually at a higher risk of dropping out of school (Ingrum, 2006). They usually attend schools which are notorious for having high dropout rates. This, therefore, increases their chances of dropping out of school. On the whole, students who struggle with poor grades early in their pursuit of education are at an increased risk of dropping out (Holmes, 2006).

Parental Involvement

Parental involvement basically involves active participation of a parent in the academic development of their young ones. If there is little parental involvement, there is likelihood that a student will be less concerned (Forsyth & Furlong, 2003). Research indicates that it is common to find little parental involvement among low income families. This eventually leads to behavioral challenges, which also affect the education of a child. The academic achievement of a child requires the active participation of both the child and the parent, who will at times assist the child in completing homework and other assignments (Ingrum, 2006).

No Child Left Behind

In the United States, the initiative dubbed No Child Left Behind (NCLB) was set up with the intention of providing quality education to students attending urban high schools. Before its establishment, a number of urban schools began streamlining their programs. In this regard, they set up small learning communities, to alleviate the large schools otherwise known as ‘warehouses’. The NCLB was basically meant to initiate reforms in the education sector.

However, the complex rules set up by the program made it very hard for the schools to accomplish the required standards. Keeping the needy students as well as moving production forward became a toll order. This is the result of high teacher turnover rate in urban high schools.

Consequently, the schools came up with alternative certification pathways. However, these alternatives turned out to be highly inadequate. This was mainly because the new teachers did not acquire the experience they badly needed. Additionally, the administration put at risk the interdisciplinary teaching that was vital in the successful revamping of schools.

Conclusion

Socio-economic status of individuals greatly impacts the education level they eventually attain. It directly and very likely indirectly affects the course of direction an individual takes in life educationally. Research has indisputably indicated that lower economic status has the effect of increasing the probability of dropping out of school. Essentially, it is important to encourage students coming from low income families to continue with education, since the consequences of not graduating are grim, considering the high competition for the limited job opportunities. 

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