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The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
The impact of poverty lawrence
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The impact of poverty lawrence

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"The impact of poverty on learning" is a workshop presented in Lawrence MA.

"The impact of poverty on learning" is a workshop presented in Lawrence MA.

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  • 1. The Impact of Poverty
  • 2. An Urban Issue? Poverty
  • 3. In 2001 and shortly thereafter, the growth of suburban poverty intersected that of urban, and since then, the poverty of the suburbs has risen faster than that of the city! City versus Suburbs 3
  • 4.  Teacher Evaluation  Privatization  Teacher Education and Training  Curriculum Development: Public versus Private  High Stakes Testing versus Genuine Assessments  Reform: What’s New?  Funding:: What A Local Tax Base Means  Poverty  Race and Inequality Issues In Education
  • 5.  Researchers at Columbia’s Teachers’ College (Rebell/Wolfe, 2011) tell us that “there is no general education crisis in American education but there is a crisis of poverty.”  Finland: Children in poverty=less than 5%  USA: children in poverty=22% and rising!  What  What can we learn from “high performance education systems” elsewhere? do we know about the education systems of the “high performing nations”? The Impact of Poverty
  • 6. The Current State of Poverty in Baltimore 91,581 African-Americans 41,000 under 18 years or 23.4% of age Baltimore total-123,956 or 20.1% of total 10.1% of those in poverty are employed 66,441 of the over-25 population are in poverty and more than 75% of those are high school grads or below “White” and “Asian” poverty levels are 13.4 and 13.1% of those total populations Statistics
  • 7. The 2011 rate was 11.6 per cent (based on threshold of $22,000 for a family of four) This is up from 11.4 in 2010, and 9.9 in 2007. Black population: 6% but 13% of poor; Asian population is also 6% but 16% of the poor. Whites are 83% of population but 64% of poor. Massachusetts Poverty 7
  • 8. The Situation in Lawrence, the “city of the damned”……… A 1999 report issued by Merrimack College, entitled The Community Context of Health in Lawrence, Massachusetts provided extensive statistical evidence of the impact of poverty, unemployment and decades old neglect on the city. What we learn from that, now, is that things have become significantly worse on virtually every indicator! Home values: down 18% in five years/25% of public school students below proficiency in English/34% live under poverty line/median income fell 20% over five years…………… Lawrence? 8
  • 9. Facts About American Poverty  Family of four=$21,834  “Basic Needs Budget”=$35,000  Poverty still equates in many ways to race  School budgets are tied to property taxes  75% of the nation’s schools report the need for major repairs  Most schools in bad shape are in 70%+ high poverty zones  High school grad rates are more than 15% lower in urban districts  High school grad rates are much higher for whites  Children raised in poverty are six times more likely to drop out  In 2008 17 of the nation’s top fifty cities had graduation rates less than 50% (Detroit, Cleveland and Indianapolis all less than 35%)
  • 10.  Situational: created suddenly by crisis, natural disaster, sudden loss. Often temporary.  Generational: passed on through two or more generations  Absolute: scarce resources in general, such as housing, food/water, often also due to national or regional conditions  Relative: failure to meet average national standards  Urban: characterized by poor services, poor health, crime, unemployment or underemployment, violence, overcrowding, noise  Rural: this has been roughly five percent higher in the U.S than urban poverty since records first kept in the 1960’s. Characterized by travel issues, lack of access to services, disabilities, poor housing, limited educational opportunities; is also generational  Urban-10-15% Rural-15-20% Nationally 18% and growing…….. Six Kinds of Poverty
  • 11. Risks Related to Poverty Pesticide agents Neurotoxic agents Income below poverty line (and Inadequate schools Nutritional deficits Teen pregnancy Deficient Pre-Natal care Tobacco/Drug use (maternal) Low parent education Unsupportive home life Incarceratation often unreliable)
  • 12. An Endless Cascade of Consequences 40% of children in poverty experience two or more deficiencies in functioning by age three. Children in poverty have less access to cultural resources (library, museum), spend more time watching television, have fewer books in the home, are less likely to be read to, more likely to rely on peers than adults for social and emotional support, and are much more likely to have single-parent homes. Children in poverty have much more stress, fewer stable relationships, get less positive reinforcement, less homework help, and experience more emotional imbalance.
  • 13. We seem to be hardwired for sadness, joy, surprise, anger, disgust and fear. We are taught humility, forgiveness, empathy, optimism and compassion as well as compassion, sympathy, shame, patience and gratitude. In many cases, it is the school that teaches these behaviors! “…the acute and chronic stress that children raised in poverty experience leaves a devastating imprint on their lives.” Eric Jensen, Teaching With Poverty in Mind Nature Versus Nurture (Again!)
  • 14. Stress impairs behavior in many ways:  Links to over 50% of absences  Impairs attention and concentration  Reduces cognition, memory, creativity  Impairs social skills and judgment  Reduces motivation, determination and effort  Increases likelihood of depression  Reduces growth of new brain cells (Jensen-cited research studies) Stress
  • 15. Stress Acting out; Impatience; Impulsivity; Lack of “social graces”; Limited range of behavior responses; Inappropriate emotional reactions; Lack of empathy and/or sympathy Diminished self-worth Difficulty in trusting others Memory issues Mood swings Can be more violent Uncertainty about future More health issues Coping measures limited Environment is unfriendly
  • 16.  Prefrontal/Executive: complex creativity  Left perisylvian: the center for language skills  Medial temporal: storage system (memory, emotional processing,  Hippocampus/amygdala)  Parietal/spatial cognition system: organize, sequence, visualize  Occipito-temporal/visual cognition system: recognize patterns, visual mental imagery processes abstractions Research suggests significant differences in systems between children in poverty and those in better circumstances. Brain Research
  • 17.  Research conducted by Noble, Norman, Farah and published in Developmental Science over a three year period (2005-07) suggests the following:  In categories such as language development, spatial cognition, visual cognition, working memory, storage memory and cognitive control, low-SES (socioeconomic status) children were significantly impeded in their development compared to high-SES children. “The growing human brain desperately needs coherent, novel, challenging input, or it will scale back its growth trajectory.” (Jensen) Brain Research (2)
  • 18.  Toys  Reliability/Consistency  Play Dates  Art, Music, Drama  Books  Conversations  Nutritious Food  Regular medical/dental checks  Role models  Cultural stimuli  Great education  Hope, optimism, emotional security Ideal Circumstances?
  • 19. So we look elsewhere for the ways to supplement the lives of our children. One of the places we do that is in schools.  Despite the gloomy forecast implicit in the evidence we already have, it remains clear that intervention and enrichment can have a positive ameliorative impact on learning, brain development and intelligence. Child development and child psychological research over the past ten years documents improvements, long-term, as a result of improved educational environments.  Enrichment=wraparound services+lowered stress levels+creative and challenging curriculum+tutoring and “pull-out services”+strong peer and adult mentoring relationships+physical exercise and healthy routines  (Definition of enrichment borrowed from Eric Jensen) But Utopia Is Not Real….
  • 20.  Characteristics of High Achievement, High Poverty Schools  High expectations  “No excuses” culture  Caring adults  Emphasis on reading skills  Faculty collaboration  Shared mission and goals  Teacher appreciation for the role they play in achievement  Data collection and use  Good curriculum  Teacher support  Culture/climate is right  Structure What Is To Be Done?
  • 21. Students are more likely to: Attend school more regularly Improve academic growth Be less prone to troubles outside school Better peer relations Mentoring
  • 22. + Maintain moderate vocal levels Do what you say you’ll do Change plans if need be Say “please” and “thank you” Admit mistakes, make amends Be fair and consistent Offer support, always Reinforce what they do well Show care for and about Overdo the pep talks: “hot air” syndrome Plan endlessly but not implement Put kids first and forget about staff Climate of fear? Measure improvement only by test scores Treat symptoms not causes Use excuses Too much, too soon? (reform)
  • 23. ♥  Physical Exercise  Performing Arts  Discussion and Debate  Varied Class Activities (don’t tie them to seatwork!)  Collegial work among teachers models teamwork for students! What Works?
  • 24. ♫  Build         relationships Pre-assess Teach to mastery Summarize Create hope and optimism Give children a voice Plan lessons and prepare Change as needs arise Build skills, focus on critical thinking What Works (2)
  • 25. “Cultural deficit ” is a convenient scapegoat for school failure, the failure to grip the imagination and the needs of students.  ”A common perception among both educators and the public is that students {fail and} drop out of school because of personal deficiencies or cultural deprivation……… This, in turn, implies that schools bear little responsibility for students dropping out and therefore can take few actions to reduce the number of dropouts.”  Cited in Why Culture Counts, Tileston, Darling, (2008), Solution Tree Press The Role of Culture
  • 26. Grant Wiggins/Jay McTighe in Understanding By Design (2005) tell us that there are six guidelines for understanding. In Why Culture Counts, the authors use that guide in the following skills advice: students are led to complex thinking by: 1.“The ability to explain the learning in the student’s own words 2.The ability to interpret the learning 3.The ability to apply the learning in a context other than the one in which it was learned 4.The ability to see things in perspective 5.The ability to empathize 6.The ability to know ourselves and be honest about that appraisal.” Understanding Across Culture
  • 27.  ■A study completed in 2005 by the Institute for Research on Poverty, showed that an increase in income can result in a clear increase in math and reading scores  ■A strong relationship with the community results in stronger results and in better behavior  ♠The United States ranks 20th in infant mortality amongst industrialized “developed” countries  ♠The U.S. has the worst single parent percentage (25%)  ♠The U.S. is highest in income inequality (more than 35% of all wealth in the hands of 1% of the population)  ♠The U.S. had the highest poverty rate for single parent households headed by female parent (5X the rate of married couples)  ►25% of those 17-24 years old were deemed unfit for military service due to obesity!  20% of all our children now live in poverty (getting worse) Relevant Information
  • 28. ♫A University of California-Berkeley study (2008) showed that prefrontal cortex functions were lower in high poverty children but that this could be reversed with early “high intensity” interventions!  ♫Art and Music programs add to the possibility of improving high poverty student performance  ♫High poverty children are exposed to 30 million less words, in total, than middle class counterparts!  ♫A Canadian study of poverty in 2007 (“Oh, Canada”) states that “teachers can be critically important partners in improving student’s life chances”.  ♫A Center for American Progress study of the use of “extended time” in schools found that there is no national guideline for longer school time, no national research on how longer school days have helped students, even though almost everyone agrees that “traditional school times” are insufficient! (longer school days risk teacher burnout and there is no research on this where schools have longer days and annual calendars).  Relevant (2)
  • 29. British Research An intriguing study conducted with grants from Save The Children and The Joseph Rowntree Foundation and published in 2007 came to the following conclusions: 1. All costs associated with schools in high poverty areas should be underwritten by the state; 2. Children are disconnecting from school by age ten! 3. Boys and girls tell us that they are routinely shouted at in high poverty schools: this rarely happens in “advantaged” schools! 4. Teacher time is too often spent in crisis management. Schools in “disadvantaged areas” need social workers and case workers to deal with issues related to poverty, freeing teachers to plan and manage lessons. 5. “It is clear that the possibility of a child experiencing an education that is likely to produce a fully rounded individual, developed to his or her full potential, is still dependent on parental income”. Children in disadvantaged schools were much more likely to believe they were “not smart enough” to do well on tests!
  • 30. Role models Supporters Build relationships that matter Support parents Stimulate motivation Teach accountability Prepare well Believe in student growth Demonstrate teamwork and last Why Teachers Matter
  • 31. Lack of preparation/support Inability to maintain consistent behavioral standards Don’t motivate Not collegial Don’t believe in students’ ability Bias and prejudice Personal inconsistency: lack of punctuality, absenteeism Wrong job! Why Teachers Fail
  • 32. Get help from colleagues Plan ahead Admit to difficulties Develop one-on-one conferences with students and parents Expect success from students Don’t give up on them or yourself! Teamwork is powerful Motivate through materials and methods Teach what you want from students Your Support Systems?
  • 33. Children living in poverty: More likely to live in or near toxic waste sites  More likely to live in areas that do not meet Air Quality Standards (EPA)  Have had more exposure to pesticides  Have greater exposure to lead  Have more exposure to cigarette smoke  Poor families move twice as often, and get evicted five times as often  Children in poverty face 50 percent more street crossings  Poor children have much greater contact with aggressive peers  Summary 33
  • 34. Summary (2) Poor communities experience more community violence  Safety concerns lead to added stress which undermines academic performance  Stress levels anywhere form 35-50% higher  Food choices (diet, shopping availability) are affected by high cortisol levels (cortisol is a chemical associated with high poverty and stress levels)  Poverty demographics: suburbs reached similar levels in 2001, and have now surpassed urban populations!  Facts…………. 34
  • 35. Should we get used to this???? Poverty
  • 36. ….and this????? Poverty

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