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Education, Health, And Poverty

Education, Health, And Poverty

File this under truths which many people choose to not believe. Whether they just don’t want to accept the data because their conscience would dictate they actually have to do something about the situation, or their political ideology dictates that everyone is one-hundred percent responsible for their own outcomes, these are a few things some people deny when it comes to poverty in America.


Access to healthcare does effect how long we live as shown by a new study on life expectancy in America (, which is a reflection of quality of life as well. Simply put, if you have more resources, namely money, you not only have less stress negatively affecting your health, you have the ability to do something about health issues right away.


Schools where students perform poorly don’t have so much to do with the quality of teachers (or teacher unions if you’re someone who thinks workers organizing for better pay and working conditions are wrong but that rich people organizing to hoard wealth are hunky dory), but the performance of the students has more to do with poverty.

Here is a map of graduation rates:

The graduation rates from every school district* in one map

and a map of poverty rates:

See the similarities? Numerous studies have pointed to poverty as the main factor in poor performance in school. I’m not sure if most people have tired of hearing that poverty, especially generational poverty, actually has an effect on people or what, but over the years the acceptance of this being a factor in education outcomes has dwindled. Poverty is hard to fix, and typically requires society as a whole to step in and take action to change the situation. Apathy is our main enemy. Compassion is the cure.

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