Howdoes RACE influence educational opportunities?
Racialprejudice has been a subject of controversy over decades and a stigmathat has brought rot in our society. As noted by Hochschild& Shen (2009), raceis defined by demographic difference between origin of descend thatis attributed to different skin tone, speech pattern physicalcharacteristics and with recent studies difference in phenotype andgenetic characteristics. The perception of being different isregarded as the origin of prejudice towards different races hence,an aspect of human nature. The American society has probably thelargest diversity of race in the world with a slice of almost all theraces. This diversity has over the years led to categorisation ofmajority and minority races due to population numbers and led to theissue of prejudice and discrimination.
Minorityraces have been less entitled, due to their numbers, as well as feweropportunities compared to the majority race. Race has been said toinfluence much in our society including educational standards,income, career paths politics and generally social standing in thesociety (House & Williams, 2000). In one way or the other, racehas affected equal opportunity in one of these key areas in aperson`s life. The difference in opportunities has created anachievement gap whereby the minority group has been left to settlefor less while the majority group take the biggest chunk of theaccolade in achievements. The large disparity in social and economicstatus has been attributed to a number of factors that intertwineultimately to the racial influence (House & Williams, 2000).
Educationalstandards are a factor that has been affected due to race. Privilegeand wealth as well as low income and poverty have a direct link tothe education level in society. Formal based education is based onthe assumption of equal opportunity for all and it is graded on themerit of good and proper results according to what is learnt. On theother hand, the level of education is dependent on the demographicregion on which the school is based teacher funding quality, andclass size all which differ according to social status. Privateinstitutions offer better quality of education compared to theunderfunded public school which host a majority of the minority racestudents due to demographic region they live in (Hochschild &Shen, 2009).
Resultshow that there are more majority white students who graduate fromhigh school compared to minority race students. The cycle continueswith few minority race students attaining a higher level educationdegree compared to the majority race students (Kim & Sunderman,2005). It is also noted that most of the majority of whites live inthe suburbs, which are middle class and more developed locations ofthe school districts. On the other hand, the minority group is mainlyfocused on the less entitled school location with fewer schools,teacher, and poor curriculum. The outcome of these results is basedon the demographic location of the school districts, which showsbiases in equal opportunities. So we can see, educational opportunitywhether entitled or less entitled is biased on the basis of race (Kim& Sunderman, 2005).
Theeducation system is built on the foundation of equal opportunity andhas disregard for race or ethnic disposition but it is subject tomisinterpretation since it is based on knowledge passed down fromteachers to students (Kim & Sunderman, 2005). Racial bias ineducation is a more likely scenario in that minority race studentstend to be discriminated against. Fewer opportunities are accorded tostudents of advanced capability of minority race while even theslightest of advanced capability in a majority race student isnatured and grown to greater heights. Students of minority race withadvanced capabilities are rarely noticed and when they are finallynoticed not much is done to cultivate their abilities to be evengreater individuals in society.
Childhoodformal learning age is also a factor affected by race. There are moremajority race children who begin school between the ages of 4 to 6than there are minority race children at around the same age. Thisis attributed to their social economic status brought about by theirracial profile. Starting school early may not necessarily ensure thata child is able to develop and adapt to the school system better onthe other hand it may also offer a head start to the learningprocess. Fewer children are able to join the school system at therequired age due to family strain on finance or the lack of properdocumentation a situation that is a rare occurrence in the suburbswhere a majority of the majority race is located.
Thehigher education system has the same flaw with fewer and fewernumbers of student from the minority race having the opportunity tojoin colleges. The college tuition fee alone amounts to huge expensesprobably a family of the minority race has not earned in a year. Itis not all from the majority race who will afford such tuition feesbut a good number of the families in the majority race will do. Raceis again still a factor throughout the system with unequalopportunity bearing for the races in society.
Asmuch as increased funding to the education system to even the field,the same situation applies there will be still be more funding to theschool in the better district areas than in the minority areadistrict school. There is still the lack of quality in the educationsystem when it comes to the racial profile. Majority race studentsare more privileged and a sense of the bias has been cultivated fordecades thus it is still haunt the equal opportunity effort. Effortsto provide scholarships have been a step to help boost the numbers ofthe minority race students in the education system. Furthermore,educational policy that favour minority race group to give an equalopportunity footing to earn achievements on a level playing field.
Itis clearly evident that race has influence on the education systemand even more so in equal education opportunities. The influence ofrace in the society has projected the outcome without a doubt .Raceand its diversity is a factor here to stay and it only in the bestinterest to embrace the differences and appreciate the diversity inthe education system. Equal opportunity is the true foundation ofthe concept of the formal educational system and with that in mindsracial prejudice is a face is the backbone among other factors theroot of inequality in the education system. An equal opportunitysetting in the education system will have a better outcome and a justsociety on merit.
Hochschild,J. L., & Shen, F. X. (2009). Race and Education Policy. OxfordHandbook on Racial and Ethnic Politics in America.
House,J. S., & Williams, D. R. (2000). Understandingand Reducing Socioeconomic and Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Health.Washington DC: National Academy Press.
Kim,J., & Sunderman, G. (2005). Measuing academic Proficiency Underthe Np Child Left Behind Act: Implications for Eduactional Equity.Educationalresearcher,3-13.