Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Education and equality

I just saw this report about a mother jailed for 10 days because she gave a wrong address in order to send her children to a better school:

http://news.yahoo.com/video/us-15749625/mom-jailed-for-sending-kids-to-better-school-23973624

Why are they going after this woman?

I understand in the narrow view of things, she made a false statement.

In the broader view, though - don't we WANT to be encouraging people to strive to get a better education for themselves and their children?

How is it possible to give children of all backgrounds a fair start in life without quality schools?

Why not simply eliminate the whole idea of residency requirements for schools? In my city, local taxes no longer fund public schools, but the residency requirements still remain - unless there is a vacancy, no one outside of the school area can apply. What would happen to all schools if that changed? Would it force residents of wealthier areas to care about gang violence in bad schools? Would it force all schools to improve by introducing competition? Would it promote more diversity, and allow for more upward mobility among students from bad areas?

5 comments:

gabrielle said...

i saw this - and i find the whole thing unbelievable. and when you notice that they have also taken away the possibility of this woman becoming a teacher herself, and therefore being able to support herself and her daughters to get a better future. makes me glad i live where i do.

JRKmommy said...

Exactly - it's like they're saying "how dare she try to better herself and her children's chances in life".

Have you ever read "The Color of Water"? The author talks about how his mom was obsessive about making sure that she got the forms to transfer the kids into the best public schools in NYC, even though they were living in a Brooklyn housing project. All 12 children went to university.

Tova said...

JRK, what's your contact info? I'd like to write you an email.

JRKmommy said...

JRKmommy at gmail dot com

Tova said...

OK, I emailed ya. ;)