Equal Opportunities in Education: Myth or Reality? - Essay Sample

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1923 Words
Date:  2023-01-29


The main aim of going to school for most people is to get a better opportunity and live a good life. In this essay, I am going to look into various opportunities that are available for learners, whether they get equal opportunities without discrimination of any kind. Most people believe that going being educated is associated to being wealthy and having the same sort of income and social status as others, but the truth is not everybody gains the same state of wealth as others; there exists differences despite most people going to school. There are various that am going to look into to show how education relates to equal opportunities in the job market. How family income level associates to the level of education. Student's background and achievements he/she is likely to achieve in education. What leads to inequalities such as market and school inequalities?

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Education and equality of opportunity are based on the fact that some people in the society are wealthy than others thus bringing competition between the individuals.

Life is all about race with school being the center no it all, everybody want to achieve greatness, though the American definition of the 1770s regarded all men to be created equally. But the problem at these days was that women were discriminated, they were never allowed to vote, some were enslaved, due to their social status, race, and ethnicity, only white people were considered then in everything. Though to curb this disparity education became the primary tool, which provided an opportunity to start life competition and the same level and fairground without any discrimination (Tiffany, 2011).

Education provides an opportunity for every person to compete for job and income equally. The truth of the matter is when people are in school there are those who are likely to excel more than others, maybe due to their hard work, but they all have same opportunities to make it in life because they are under equal learning opportunity; Hence to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor in the society it is the work of schools to ensure that everybody at least achieve a certain level of success in education to enable him/her to compete with others in the job market. The poor will have a feeling that through their children, they will be rescued from poverty and join the rich since, both the rich and poor kids will have affair ground to compete for success. This will alleviate the feeling of political, social, and economic inequality between people in society (Tiffany, 2011).

School Models That Ensure Equality of Opportunity

Both the American schools in the 20th centuries and 21st centuries, in a bid to try to bring justice to all students, have centered their arguments in 3 major categories; Common school model, this is where all students from all walks of life status are given opportunity for some education and to start from the states of economic situation, they graduate and go out looking for jobs in the same way as others without discrimination. In the 18th centuries, those who advocated for the start of common school had in mind that both students from wealthy families and low-income families to be mixed and subjected to same education as a way to attain opportunity. This thought was challenged by New York Workingman's Party who in their view, saw this not working as at the end of the day poor will still go back to their poor houses while the rich kids will go back to their wealthy homes where they have all the materials to read well thus they advocated for common boarding schools where the students will be subjected to some treatment, hence providing same opportunities. Common schools are still faced with difficulties, since rich kids still have advantages on poor kids, in terms of materials to read, tutors and being more exposed to outside world and culture than the poor kids this remains to be a big challenge to curb the inequalities.

Another Model of Concern Is the Sorting-Machine Model

Here the student's family influence is eliminated by the teacher taking part in partial decision making and subjecting students to a standardized form of tests and also divided them into different groups according to their abilities, as this enables them to grow together without others having an advantage over others. This model also tries to curb the difference in the social and cultural condition of the students, in attempting to eliminate the inherited intelligence and put lots of emphasis on the effect to the student's environment conditions by providing the same kind of reading materials and coordinate system of learning. The High-Stakes Testing Model is the last model, wherein this model we not only test the intelligence of a person but all students are required to do standard examination at the end of each learning term to determine their promotion from one grade to another, and finally their graduation and those credentials are which they use to seek for employment. When a person is seeking a job, everybody is allowed to apply, and through the interview, the most preferred will be picked for the job despite their social status, this ensures equality. In the United States, standardized testing begins from elementary school to the workplace based on their credential, not their influence in the community (Joel, 2015).

There are various ways to test and determine skills as predictors of the economic conditions between multiple countries

Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) and Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) are the two mainly used methods. The results from these tests are essential to determine various skills acquired from multiple national schools in the different nation as a determinant of economic gains over time within that particular nation, and this is according to the global view of the American School. Scores of PISA and TIMSS help to measure the level of labor force a country is having without having to predict how many colleges they have, or the number of graduates they do produce. The most critical role of these scores is to help measure the necessary skills of these students required for various job markets (Bureau of Labor Statistics U.S.A, 2013).

Does Education Determine Someone’s Level of Income?

Research has shown that the number of years someone spends in school is directly associated with the amount of wealth or incomes is likely to receive. The truth is education shapes your life towards achieving economic freedom, but there are other social factors like gender and race can also determine a person's income level. From the census statistics taken in the U.S.A, it shows that despite having equal opportunities for learning and securing a job when it comes to payments, men are still paid highly as compared to women. According to race, it has been found that the white men in American earn more than other people from different races like Asians. Also, white women earn more than their fellows from different races, though generally, men earn more than women. Thus this indicates that despite, the education being used as a weapon to reduce inequalities in the United States, still there are several social factors like race and gender that hinder this objective from being achieved due to discrimination (Bureau of Labor Statistics U.S.A, 2013).

Most People Will Ask Themselves Whether the Education System in America Favors the Rich While Leaving the Poor at Their Current State

Most qualified workers in American are competing for job opportunities with people from other countries; this means that if a company is looking for workers, it will go for less expensive workers, than most skilled workers who want higher pay. Increase in the gap between the rich and poor in America where some people feel like the rich are continuing to be more affluent while the poor are becoming poorer has been caused by the fact that in the competitive global market, wealthy people are being favored than the poor people. This inequality has also been contributed by the composition of the household, where there is a rise of single parents who are financially disadvantaged due to an increase in divorce in America. There is also significant blame put on schools of America for failure to properly shape students to gain necessary skills to be able to compete globally with other workers from different nations in the global market, and this has led to rising in inequality between citizens. Additional factor of concern in American that promotes education inequalities is that there are some schools that have more facilities than others, this shows that the quality of education that the students from more developed school get and that student from less developed school is very different and this translate to even the job market (Joel, 2015).

According to Research Done by Nces, the Leading Social Problem That Causes Students Not to Get Equal Education Is Poverty

NCES based their study on socioeconomic factors rather than the Bureau of statistics of income in the US. The SES of students is determined by parental education level, parental occupation, family income, and a household item. These factors have caused some student to lag in terms of education, thus widening the gap between the rich and the poor. Poverty plus being raised by a single parent results highly too many students leaving school (Charles, 2013).

There Are Several Ways That Can Be Employed to Help Increase Educational Equality and Thus Boost Balance in the Job Market

We can use the tracking and ability grouping method; this is where, and we track students and place them according to different curricula like college preparatory, vocational, and general. We can as well group students into different classes based on their capabilities. This can be done through regular tests and assessment by teachers. And it is worth to note that the teacher expectations will play a more significant role in ensuring that students of lower ability are helped to do well in class as a way to curb the education disparity and achieve success. Social reproduction is where schools reproduce the social class structure of the society; authors of this method suggested that education is the only way to earn occupational immobility in America. The main aim of this method is to reduce the norm and believe that for one to economically or social advancement, their family background must be good. In 2016 Democratic party suggested for the right for early childhood education from preschool to high school and above without any discrimination. They were against profit-making charter schools and urged them to at least consider every kind of students from disabled poor and even the rich without prejudice. Democrats also believed that by reducing the college fees would help to increase the number of students attending colleges and thus to prevent educational disparities (Democratic Party, 2016).


In conclusion, education is the only weapon that can ensure the gap between the poor and rich is reduced. Hence it will be good if education is given topmost priority and all stakeholders to work together to ensure that a form of discrimination has not found its way into the education system for are one people and one nation.


Bee, Charles Adam. "The Geographic Concentration of High-Income Households: 2007-2011."U.S. Census Bureau: American Community Survey Briefs (February 2013). www.census.gov/ prod/2013pubs/acsbr11-23.pdf.

Democratic Party Platform on July 21, 2016. Retrieved from www.presidency.ucsb.edu/papers_pdf/ 117717.pdf, January 10, 2017

Spring, Joel. Economization of Education: Human Capital, Global Corporations,...

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Equal Opportunities in Education: Myth or Reality? - Essay Sample. (2023, Jan 29). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/equal-opportunities-in-education-myth-or-reality-essay-sample

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