Joey P. New Jersey

Classist Education

A letter to the president that addresses the problem of classist education in America.

Dear Future President,

Thirty years ago, America was the leader in quantity and quality of high school diplomas. Today, our nation is ranked 36th in the world. Just imagine how much America could improve if we simply spend more money towards making our education equal for all lower class, middle class, and upper class families.

First there will be a higher percentage of people making it to high school and college graduation if students of all classes are provided with strong education opportunities. Just think, if students have a teacher who has a degree in teaching, teaching your reading class, and a teacher who has a degree in law teaching your reading class, obviously the teacher who has a teacher’s degree will provide you will better knowledge in reading. According to the education policy analysis archives, Darling-Hammond, Linda, and Gary Skyles, in schools made up of 75% or more low income students there are 3 times more out-of-field teachers than in wealthier districts. This means that there are 3 times more teachers in low income school districts that are doing a teaching job, that they don’t have the right experience to teach. According to Sheehy Kelsey; author of “High School Students Not Prepared For College, Career” , only 1 in every 4 high school graduates graduate college-ready in the core 4 subjects, reading, language arts, science, and math. With paying for proper learning opportunities for all students, this level of college-ready graduates can rise.

Another reason is that in the long run, equal education for all can improve the unemployment rate and more money will be earned during students’ lifetimes. According to the campaign for CHSE High School Equity in 2015, if the 1.3 million high school dropouts in 2010 had graduated, the U.S would’ve seen a projected 337 billion more dollars in earnings over the students’ lifetimes. An article from entitled “It’s not about how much money you spend, it’s about how you spend it.” This means that if we keep spending money towards wealthy school districts, and not enough to poor school districts, then the wealthy districts will keep getting better, and the low class districts will keep getting worse. That’s why America's education system is “classist”.

My third and final point to prove that more money needs to be put towards lower class districts is that many American people who were poorly educated or completely uneducated often get themselves into trouble when they get older. For example, according to, ⅔ of students who cannot read proficiently by the end of 4th grade will end up in jail or on welfare. Another example of what can happen if we don’t spend more money on poor school districts is that 90% of high school drop outs end up on welfare. This means that the 90% of dropouts will end up receiving financial support because they are in need of it, but that is not the only consequence of an unequal education. Reports show that the rate of low literacy in the United States directly costs the healthcare industry over $70 million every year. That means that many of these students who were not educated properly, ended up becoming sick or being injured, costing a combined 70 million dollars in another industry in the U.S.

Some people may claim that more money needs to be spent towards other industries such as healthcare, agriculture, finance, and finance, but clearly all of the affects of how much money America spends on lower class school districts is hurting our country. If the money is spent on the lower class education, America can improve more than if the money is put towards a different industry.

As our President, do you want to see our country succeed as a whole, or do you just want to see our wealthiest class succeed? Get us back to where we were thirty years ago with education, first in quantity and quality of education.  


Joey P.

Brielle Elementary

Eighth Grade Citizens

The students in the eighth grade who wished to post their letters are featured here. Students worked for several weeks in both Social Studies and Language Arts classes, crafting their arguments. They participated in Penpal Schools Decision 2016 as well as Media Literacy Week.

All letters from this group →