Target: US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan
Goal: Encourage funding and wide-spread reforms for inner-city schools
With the gap between rich and poor growing wider in the United States, education has become a key issue, especially in the inner-city. For years, low-performing schools have been strapped for cash, and student education suffers. Demand that the US government implement changes and provide increased funding for schools.
Drop-out rates for teachers and students alike in inner-city schools are typically higher than average. In fact, the National Commission to Teach America’s Future found that teacher attrition has grown over fifty percent in the past several years, due in part to poor test scores in urban schools. Teacher’s pay is tied to student performance on subsidized testing, and in low-performing schools, there is a heavy rate of teacher drop-out. No Child Left Behind created this policy, and it has had a severe impact on schools that do not perform well, increasing teacher attrition.
Inner-city schools are also in desperate need of greater funding. All too often, the education system is the first to suffer budget cutbacks, impacting schools that already suffer from lack of resources. School buildings may experience maintenance problems, poor upkeep, and limited staff that must deal with supply shortages and overfull classrooms.
Teachers should not be judged solely by student performance on standardized tests, especially when funding is a key issue in many school districts. Nor should the education system undergo such severe cuts in times of national economic downturns: education is crucial for the future prosperity. We owe it to these children to offer the best education possible, and we cannot continue to restrict funding to schools.
Dear Secretary Arne Duncan,
Inner-city schools have suffered serious cutbacks, even more so during the economic downturn. They are frequently overcrowded, underfunded, and lacking necessary supplies. The No Child Left Behind policy has also played a negative role: teachers in low-performing schools face pay cuts when their students do not do well on standardized tests, and teacher attrition has significantly increased in the past decade.
I urge the Department of Education to address these looming issues and introduce much-needed reforms. The US government cannot continue to cut education budgets when inner-city schools are already struggling. Cutting back on financial resources for schools severely impedes the education of children and teenagers in the inner city, denying them a good education. There must be change: education must be made a priority, and the United States must take every available option to ensure that inner-city schools are given the resources they need.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Smallbones via Wikimedia Commons