The Reality of the Achievement Gap in Education

I grew up in a suburb of Phoenix, Arizona. Arizona has always been ranked one of the worst in the United States when it comes to Education.

Arizona ranks 34th overall in Best States ranking, 43rd in education

As someone who studied Education at the University level, I was shocked at the ignorance among my fellow classmates. I initially went to college to become a Teacher, so I was grouped with many others with the same major. It was not until my Senior year that I had the opportunity to take a Sociology course titled ‘Education and Society’. This was a pivotal moment in my life because I interacted with a more diverse group of students and was able to voice my opinion among people who grew up “on the other side of the tracks” where the “grass was greener”. I will never forget a debate we had about the Achievement Gap in the United States Education system. The whole class took the two extremes, of poverty and privilege, in education and compared how based on your Zip Code it could determine your success in life. The Achievement Gap was predetermined, and unless you were lucky or had educated parents, then you were bound to repeat the cycle.

It was clear to me then that the problem of the American Public School System was too big to tackle. When something cannot be changed from the inside, it may be best to reconsider altogether.

In a recent article I wrote titled Public Schools and Education: Why Teaching for High Achievement Doesn’t Work in the Real World (https://phoebeglen.com/public-schools-and-education-why-teaching-for-high-achievement-doesnt-work-in-the-real-world/) I state that “How does education need to change to be more productive for our world economy? Surely, there is no easy answer, and the more complex it gets, the less likely there will be real change.”

With a failing Education System, it is time to go back to basics. I honestly suggest Homeschooling your child(ren) if you have that option. Of course this is a situation that seems out of the question with working parents and overpopulation in the classrooms. Where would all of these children go? That is where Sex Education comes in. If there was a more comprehensive education about Sex and possible consequences, then I think unplanned births would happen less in poverty-stricken areas of the world. Thankfully, in the United States we have Planned Parenthood. At least that is a start. Let’s open the conversation. We need to take responsibility for closing the achievement gap…and that can begin with closing our legs (or at least using contraceptives properly).