Poverty has been known to have core effects on education amongst children. It however has both positive and negative effects on these children, though the negative ones far outweigh the positive effects. Children from poor families receive a poor level of education as compared to those in families that are well off financially.
In addition to this, chances of children in poor families enrolling in a class are dim, as the parents may depend on charity or bursaries for their children to go to school. Even though parents from these poor families strive to educate their children, these children get the lowest quality of education, and eventually drop off from class. This is because the parents may not be able to sustain the high price of education.
Like we mentioned above, poverty has both positive and negative effects on education. These effects are discussed below.
Negative Effects of Poverty on Education
1) Low performance in class
According to a private research on a child’s performance based on their family backgrounds, children from poor background tend to perform poorly in class. This is because their attendance rate in class may be reduced due to the times they have to go back home for school fees. Recovering from the lost time due to absenteeism is almost impossible, because the other children have moved forward. Teachers too do not set exams considering the lost time or classes that the child from the poor family lost. This means the child has a higher probability to chew dust during exam times, as he or she hasn’t had enough time to prepare for the exam.
2) Low level of concentration among children due to hunger
Concentrating in a class with an empty stomach is almost impossible. Children from poor families may be forced to face the night without food, or even wake up and not have any breakfast to take as they head to class. With an empty stomach, the child will not be able to concentrate in class, and may even doze off in class. Although the child may be able to perform even better than the other children in the class, these children cannot sail through to colleges or even universities. This is one of the biggest effects of poverty on education that many nations are experienced today.
3) Early pregnancies
Early unprecedented pregnancies among girls in poor families have driven many out of school. Some of these children may be forced to have unprotected sex at tender ages in exchange for money. When the pregnancy sets in, they cannot access professional guidance and counseling as their “rich” counterparts would, thus being forced to terminate their journey in education. It is one of the most discussed among the effects of poverty on education in many states and governments, but still is a menace in poor families. If these girls could be educated on ways of avoiding early pregnancies, or have an alternative for their education, it would be most welcome for them.
4) Social fitness
Although a parent in a poor family may strive to educate his children, these children consider themselves unfit socially from their peers in families that are well off. This is because the parent may not be able to raise enough money to buy educational materials required in school to enhance or make their education process easier.
If you visit a school with children from these two backgrounds, you will see a major difference. Children from poor backgrounds isolate themselves from their peers, because they do not fit in the same social class. This may affect the child’s performance in class. The children also suffer from discrimination from the other children, which may make them drop out of school. For the child to report back to school and be able to continue learning, he or she may need mentoring and guidance. If he is not strong willed to deal with the situation, this then becomes the end of his education.
5) Accessibility to educational institutions
Commuting from home to school can be a challenge among children from poor backgrounds. Under most circumstances, most children are forced to walk to and from school, thus making it difficult to continue with education. This tends to kill many of these children’s hopes and dreams, as many fall back one after the other. It requires determination for one to go on attending classes day in, day out.
6) Inability to pay school fees
It is the core problem that many families experience while educating their children. Although the parent may strive to come up with enough money to educate his children, paying up the school fees eventually becomes a burden and the children are forced out of the class. If the parent does not find a funding program to support his children to continue with their education, it then becomes the end of it. To curb these and other effects of poverty on education, most governments, as well as schools have implemented plans to support better performing children continue with their education.
7) Poor living environments
Low end income earners are often forced to live in areas where crime rate is high. These living environments do not favor education, and this forces the children to join local gangs. Distraction from these living environments also makes it hard for the child to concentrate on homework or evening studies. It thus affects his or her productivity in class.
Positive Effects of Poverty on Education
There are children from poor backgrounds who are geniuses in nature, and perform better than their peers. These children tend to top each class examination or evaluations, and have a bright future of only they can get funding to continue with their education. It is thus due to this reason why some schools have bursary programs that support these children through their education needs.
The child from a poor background works harder in class than the others knowing that, it is his or her chance to make a difference in family and uplift his siblings. Poverty is the driving factor that makes this child work hard, thus be able to perform well in class, hence finally landing a well-paying job.