I was so involved following the results of the presidential election that I failed to follow ballot initiatives in many states on school funding. It turns out that voters mostly rejected attempts to increase school funding in this election. As stated in a New York Times editorial on November 12, 2016, “inadequate school spending over prolonged periods will leave many students behind, especially low-income students.”
The Times editorial further speaks to the relationship between student achievement in wealthy schools and poor districts: “Another recent study analyzed math and reading tests taken over five years in 11,000 school districts. It found that average academic performance levels in the richest and poorest school districts were more than four grades apart.”
Clearly, inequities in our schools have many causes and unequal funding is only part of the problem. However, leveling the playing field for all our children, regardless of what neighborhood they live in, would be one way to help bridge the divide in our country during this difficult time. Hopefully, the new administration will ensure that all of our students have equal opportunity to be successful, regardless of where they live.