Education Nation: Income Disparity Provides Less Opportunity for Many | THE POLITICUS

Education Nation: Income Disparity Provides Less Opportunity for Many

A goal for most parents is to see their children grow up and get a good education, one that will provide a decent lifestyle for them and their families. Unfortunately, the likelihood of that happening for an average family has slowly deteriorated over time – the cost of education has gone up along with everything else.

Student loans can hamper someone’s future for a long time and for many of those who don’t come from wealth, a student loan is the only method they have of going to college and getting a decent education. Unlike other loans, student loans cannot be written off through bankruptcy proceedings.

It is also education that will decide the fate of this country. If we continue to allow our kids to fall way below on the scales of higher education, we’ll also see the American lifestyle diminish toward a lower standard of living.

The facts:

  • Only 43% of U.S. high school graduates meet college readiness standards for mathematics.
  • Over 67% of all engineers who received PhD’s in U.S. universities were not U.S. citizens.
  • Out of 34 countries, the U.S. ranked 14th in reading, 17th in science and 25th in math.
  • The United States spends $809.6 billion annually on education. The next highest spender in education is Japan at $160.5 billion who beats us in both science and math.

This last fact shows that even though we spend a great deal more than other countries as far as education, we’re not getting our money’s worth out of it. Maybe our education system is like our old health care system – overpriced.

Speaking of health care, we all know that within a few years, we’re going to need more medical doctors as more of the Affordable Care Act goes into effect. I believe that it is prevalent for our government to find a way to fund college scholarships for potential medical doctors. I do know that in the short-term, there’s going to be a need to rely on a steady influx of trained MDs from other countries until we can catch up with our education system to meet our own demand.

We cannot limit our education to just those who can afford it, nor can we continue to allow the cost of student loans to overburden our college-trained workforce. What’s exacerbating the problem is the current political situation where Republican-controlled state legislators are cutting education funding across the country at a time when we actually need to be investing more into seeing that our young are educated and educated well.

Let us peer forward into a future America and see either a nation that is falling under the weight of its own debts as even less of our children are receiving college educations, or a nation that stands at the top of the learning scale along with the prosperity that it brings.

We can be a nation of the few or a nation of the many; education can become a luxury afforded to just the wealthy or it can become a powerhouse of wealth and knowledge for a great many of our citizens instead, no matter their income level.

Though we can never expect that all of our children will go on to a higher education, it is imperative that we guarantee that those who have enough ambition, vision and determination can get an education, and one that won’t haunt them with the cost for years to come.

For many of our young who grow up in poverty-stricken communities, a higher education seems unreachable. Though there are bright minds even in the poorest of neighborhood, their income level limits their education and their dreams.

It doesn’t have to be that way; by investing much more into our education system and making it the number one priority for this nation, we can step out of this financial quagmire we find ourselves in and reach for the stars. Education is our future and our prosperity and without it, we don’t stand a chance.

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