Essay Sample on Inequalities in the Suburb and Urban School Systems

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1866 Words
Date:  2022-10-28


The urban and suburban public schools are seen to be affected by inequality in many aspects. Jonathan Kozol wrote a book on such disparities known as the Savage Inequalities. He brought out the differences that occur in education between schools with people from different races and classes. As a result of ethnic segregation, the education system in America faces many disparities and also due to unequal funding provided to schools (Kozol 80). As a result of racial and class distinction, the suburb and urban public schools are faced with numerous disparities that are well explained in this paper.

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Firstly, the funding gap causes inequalities in the suburban and urban public schools. Even though the education system is a structure that is designed to provide education to the general public, many schools suffer. This is because of the disparities that result from the funding gap that is in existence. The students in the low-income areas receive low-quality education due to reduced funding (Kozol 81). When the schools in the urban regions lack supplement funds, they lack the support of improving the condition of their schools. Also, they cannot purchase enough learning materials which leads to poor curriculum experience. However, their counterparts in the wealthy areas receive the best teachers and books which aid in quality education.

Secondly, the main differences in suburban and urban public schools are seen in the students receive an unequal distribution of resources for an adequate education. Minority students from the urban areas have access to spacious classrooms that provide less interaction with the teachers. The teachers teaching urban students are seen to have obtained low scores in academics and also no advanced education. However, the white students living in the suburb areas receive better funding and resources to acquire quality education.

Moreover, according to Kozol, the urban districts are faced with shortcomings when it comes to strategies of local property tax funding. In the urban areas, most of the properties available are nontaxable (Kozol 82). Therefore, the residents are less likely to be considered in matters of funding, and as a result, the schools are disadvantaged too. Also, many of the students that require special needs in the urban areas do not have access to them as the schools are incapable of providing. However, the suburban schools benefit from the property tax funding. As a result, the suburban schools are endowed with better resources than those in urban settings, and therefore students are in a better position to obtain a quality education.

Additionally, urban students are less motivated than the students from the suburban public schools. Due to the inadequate funding in the urban areas, the students do not get enough of the learning resources that they need. As a result, they tend to be dissatisfied with the education system end become less motivated. Also, the teachers in urban schools are not well motivated. The teachers, therefore, fail to meet the teaching requirements that can aid the students to get through the learning system. On the other hand, students from the suburban areas will go through the learning stage well since their teachers are well paid and motivated towards delivering the best services.

Furthermore, only the wealthy parents who are considered privileged are given the blueprints to aid them in building their children. Every parent will go to any extent to make their children's lives a success regardless of race or wealth but I the American setting, the wealthy parents are given the privileged alone. Children brought up in wealthy and white families in the suburb areas are more advantaged than those in urban settings. Their parents have the right connections with people who can offer their children an upper hand in joining successful schools and also provide information about hoops laid for joining these schools (Kozol 83). The parents even go to the extent of volunteering in the parent teachers association to obtain the favor of enrollment for their kids.

On the other hand, the parents from the inner city areas lack such decent connections. Therefore, in most cases, they require information about the successful schools available or even what they should meet before taking their kids for enrollment. Also, even if they knew such a school is existent, they are not endowed with enough wealth to enable them to take their kids to better schools.

Also, in most cases, poverty or wealth are seen as a determinant of the traits of students and the schools they attend. On average, the schools in the inner city are made up of students from low income earning families. Therefore, most of the inequalities arising between the inner city and outer city public schools are due to wealthy and poverty perceptions. People have the mentality that the students from the poor urban areas do not succeed eventually (Farmer, Raquel 30). Therefore they should not receive the same resources and attention as those from suburban public schools. The students attending urban schools from poor backgrounds face challenges like lack of food. As a result, their concentration in class is inhibited, and some even miss to attend their classes due to absenteeism. Due to the challenges they undergo, it is unfair for them to be treated in the same way as the suburban students, especially during grading and evaluation.

Besides, discrimination against urban students as compared to the white students in wealthy areas is also evident. This is another inequality in the education system shown in the way in which people, especial the whites, protest against the transfer of the students from the poor urban schools to the thriving schools around. The whites have the belief that the students in the urban areas are drug addicts and violent hence should not be enrolled in the same schools with their kids. The parents in wealthier backgrounds usually accuse the students in urban areas of being of poor academic standing due to the schools they attend. The students are considered dangerous to the children of the wealthier families as they are seen as violent criminals. Resources for the urban public schools have been soaked up by the more prosperous people to make the education venture for such students even worse.

In addition, the grading system for the schools poses inequality. The schools are awarded grades on a system that is biased and considers all the students as equal. The students are also taken through a standardized evaluation that is used to show every student's aptitudes. Therefore, the grading system does not consider the challenges that the inner city students undergo during their learning (Farmer, Raquel 30). They lack enough resources as compared to their counterparts in the suburban areas and also miss most of their classes during education. Grading them ion the same way as the students from the suburb areas shows unfairness. Suburban public schools have the resources they need to be provided to them, and therefore their students have all they need to aid in a better and conducive learning environment. The urban students are mostly shut down from better opportunities in life due to low scores in such standardized examinations. As a result, even their outlook on the world is minimized.

According to Kozol, urban schools give the impression of unhappy dwellings. Kozol observed that, unlike the suburban public schools, the schools in the inner city have a setting that makes them even unfavorable for the students to find joy in them. The schools are surrounded by perimeter walls that are made of barbed wire. Also, he observed that they had signs showing such schools were drug-free areas and their windows fortified. Such areas cannot create a conducive environment for learning. The main reason as to why those areas had those restrictions was because they were occupied by the blacks. That shows racial discrimination in the education system.

Likewise, the achievement gap contributes to the inequalities in the schools. Every school is mandated to providing the students with a conducive environment for learning and to prepare them for life ahead. Therefore, the schools should ensure that the education system shapes the students to be successful and equipped with the best knowledge in the future. However, when the standardized evaluation is used to measure the capabilities of students, their abilities cannot match with the grades (Kozol 83). Such a system only produces competition to be borne by the students. The students from the urban schools are disadvantaged when it comes to the achievement gap. They are considered as low achievers since their grades are low and low grades mainly represent failure which limits their opportunities.

Moreover, in most of the schools, the students from wealthy backgrounds are considered to be the proper ones to receive an education while those in poor areas should take what is left in the barrel bottom. In this case, the students that reside in the urban areas become shortchanged from the start of schooling (Farmer, Raquel 35). In early childhood education, the children from the inner city areas are considered the least when it comes to joining preschool. The children from wealthy families are enrolled in the best private preschools. Therefore, the quality of foundation education provided to them becomes different, yet they are tested under a standardized system when it comes to third grade. When children fail at that stage due to the poor foundation, their outlook on education changes and this affects the future performances.

Most of the people who hold power to changing the disparities in the public schools turn a blind eye to the matter of inequity. When the inequalities are not solved, the situation becomes worse, and the students from the urban and poor areas bear the hardships. Also, most of the population does not care about the performances of public schools in urban areas. As a result, they fail to put any effort into improving the conditions of urban schools as they are not willing to improve the education life of students in such schools (Kozol 84). To rectify the issue of inequality, the funds in the wealthier areas should be relocated to aid in the urban public school funding. Also, children in urban areas should be provided with good quality preschool education as their counterparts from the wealthy and white families.


Inequality is identified as a critical issue affecting the urban and suburban public schools. According to Kozol, most of the urban public schools have fewer resources including books, teachers and desks than the suburban public schools. As a result, the poor learning conditions in the urban public schools become unfavorable for efficient learning. Also, the urban public schools are provided with less funding which does not help in improving the conditions. However, suburban public schools are endowed with sufficient funding the enable them to acquire quality education. The disparities are also evident in the grading system. Considering all the challenges that students from the poor urban areas face in education, they should not be graded in the same way as those from wealthy areas. However, they are all evaluated under standardized assessment regardless of their school conditions or background.

Works Cited

Kozo, Jonathan. "Savage Inequalities." (1991): 80-86

Farmer Hinton, Raquel L., et al. "Dear Mr. Kozol.... Four African American women scholars and the re-authoring of Savage Inequalities." Teachers College Record 115.5 (2013): 1-38

Cite this page

Essay Sample on Inequalities in the Suburb and Urban School Systems. (2022, Oct 28). Retrieved from

Free essays can be submitted by anyone,

so we do not vouch for their quality

Want a quality guarantee?
Order from one of our vetted writers instead

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the ProEssays website, please click below to request its removal:

didn't find image

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience and 25% off!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism