It’s only one teacher’s opinion, but this Colorado teacher’s passionate take on poverty and “educational privilege” comports with the witness I’ve heard from so many of my public-school educator friends for so many years.
A couple of quotable quotes from the teacher, Valerie Strauss:
“I am angry that when I attend a conference for gifted children—which, make no mistake, I do have in my classroom, though they do not have the same opportunities as their more affluent counterparts—I see such a stark difference between the opportunities afforded to students in affluent areas, and the opportunities afforded to students in my classroom.
“There has been plenty of talk about privilege lately: the difference in racial privilege, the difference in gender privilege.
“There’s a difference in educational privilege, too. I see it every day. I live it. I am disgusted by it.”
“Where there is money, there is education. Where there isn’t money, there is excessive testing, lack of curricular options, and struggle. There is the struggle to give students the tools they need to fight their way through a system that is designed to hold them back from the moment they take their first breath, from the moment they try to write their first paragraph.”