Written in Ink

Education In America

I graduated from Weaver High in Hartford, Ct, class of 2000. For those that aren't familiar with Hartford, despite being located in one of the wealthiest states in the country, Hartford has consistently ranked among the top poorest cities in the nation, with 3 out of 10 families living below the poverty line.

Due to the Sheff vs. O'Neil desegregation case, several years ago the city underwent a change over to the "magnet/lottery system". Millions of dollars have went into new buildings, teachers, and supplies. But there has yet to be any type of discernible results shown for all the money spent. http://tinyurl.com/n38sxvj


When my family moved from Alabama to Hartford in the late 90's it was a culture shock. I went from calling my teachers "Sir" & "Ma'am", to students calling teachers bitches, and telling them to "shut the fuck up". I hated Weaer High. I even started carrying a blade, and mace everyday because I was scared of getting jumped. I doubt fellow alum Norman Lear had to deal with the same issue.

After dealing with attending a shitty school for over a year I begged my mom to let me go to another school out of the district. She relented, and in 1997 asked her sister to allow us to use her address so I could attend school in a neighboring suburb of Windsor. I loved it. The teachers didn't have the look of despair when they came to class. I didn't feel the need to arm myself for battle just to get an education. And the student population was a mix of all races, Black, White, Indian, and I'm sure if I looked hard enough I could have found an Eskimo somewhere.

But that elation didn't last for long. After a few months I was called into the office, and told to turn in my books. I was being kicked out of the school because I wasn't a town resident. I refused to go back to Hartford schools. I even threatened to drop out before I went back. So my mom did the next best thing. She signed custody of me over to her sister, and I moved in with her for my Sophomore-Senior years. All of this just for an education. Really?!?

Fast forward to 2011, and much hasn't changed. Heres the case of Tanya McDowell. Her case made national news because she was arrested for larceny when she sent her child to a school in another town. The arrest caused a lot of debate about the state of education in America. It's ridiculous that someone can actually be arrested for "stealing" an education. Luckily the only consequence my mom, and I suffered was me being kicked out of school temporarily. http://tinyurl.com/kqfqx8h


Eventually Connecticut's governor, Daniel Malloy, signed into law a bill that prohibits parents getting arrested for school zip code fraud. http://tinyurl.com/lobjzd6

I personally think there should be a "follow the child" type of system where the money literally follows the kid to pay for their education.


So what's your opinion on the state of education in America, and the school system in your neck of the woods?


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