School serves as an incredibly developmental time and space for young children and teens. From their first day of preschool or kindergarten until high school graduation, your children are constantly expanding their social skills and academic knowledge in the classroom. Though school is one of the most influential structures in kids’ lives, public education still has its obstacles. Learn about a few of the biggest issues facing public education and what you can do to make a difference in your child’s school and, ultimately, your community.
Though most schools implement a “zero tolerance” policy, this doesn’t always stop bullies from bullying. With the presence of social media in students’ lives, the landscape of bullying has changed. Cyberbullying now makes harassment between students easier and often more anonymous.
What you can do: To help combat bullying in your child’s school district, advocate for strict anti-bullying policies that include cyberbullying. If your child’s school has a persistent bullying issue, inquire about anti-bullying programs and groups that could promote safer learning environments for everyone.
Students who experience poverty tend to encounter more challenges in school than their peers. Having a harder time accessing three nutritious meals a day, a reliable place to sleep, and proper medical treatment places additional stress on students who are affected by poverty. These conditions may hinder the students’ ability to reach their full academic potential.
What you can do: Whether you’re an educator or not, there are plenty of ways to support students experiencing homelessness and other factors of poverty.
Classroom Size and Resource Shortage
Public education continues to be a topic of contention when it comes to the federal budget. Because of the controversy over allocation, many public schools suffer from a strained budget, making scarce resources one of the biggest issues facing public education.
A lacking budget results in overcrowded classrooms and overworked educators. A jarring student-to-teacher ratio makes it especially difficult for teachers to keep close tabs on all their students and their academic success.
What you can do: Relieve some of the financial stress that many teachers experience by starting a fundraiser for their classroom. Raising money or starting a school supplies drive is a great way to equip a local school with the materials it needs. If you have spare time, ask your child’s teachers whether there are any volunteer opportunities you could help with.