Education & Funding

The United States is one of the greatest countries in the world, yet our educational system has ranked 38th in math and 24th in science. How can this be? The United States federal budget is at an estimated $3.438 trillion, so what’s the problem? Surely the government has enough money to better the educational system. One might think so, but the annual education budget is $59.9 billion. This number is minuscule compared to the staggering $688 billion that goes toward the defense department. The future of our youth, and our country’s as well, hinges on our improvement of this system. 

There are roughly 132,853 schools in the U.S. but only 8.3 percent of state education budgets come from the federal government; these funds play a huge impact on each student’s education. About 85% of all current jobs in the U.S. and 90% of new jobs require a college or post-secondary education. Keep in mind, the national graduation rate in America is 84.6%. In addition, low-income students rely heavily on school for internet access (about 97% of them do). However, 40 million students do not have high-speed internet in school because of low funding. And so the question is, how do we fix this problem? 

The obvious solution is to increase funding for schools. And while that is our ultimate goal, we also have to provide every school with the equal opportunity to educate their students in order to succeed as only 1 in 4 high school students graduate with the necessary skills in core subjects of English, Reading, Math, and Science. With the increased education budget, we would be able to improve the lives of every student in America as well as teachers. 

If you don’t know, teaching is one of the most underappreciated jobs in America by far. 61% of all adults believe that teachers are vastly underpaid. This isn’t surprising at all, given that teachers are credited with inspiring and guiding youth along their path to the workforce. The average starting salary for teachers is $39,000. Because of this unruly fact, many Americans agree that the reason why people do not go into teaching is because of the small payoff. We as a country should focus more on who’s educating our kids and how much their being paid, rather than the latest Kardashian news.

The U.S. budget has so much potential to be redistributed, and with the 2020 election fast approaching, the entire TBC team and I are excited to see how education reform will come about under a (hopefully) new administration.

In the end, our education system has the potential to be one of the greatest if not the greatest in the world. So my question is…what are we waiting for?

Further reading:
The White House
DoED
Education Week
Pew Research                                                                                                                  Do Something
Education Week (2)
Teacher Salary Project

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