Paper Example on Education Attainment and Poverty

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  1025 Words
Date:  2022-06-24


Sociological analysis reveals that there is a nexus between education attainment and poverty. While some students from low-income households have posted excellent academic results, structural inequalities militate against high education attainment in low-income neighborhoods (Barro & Lee, 2013). Economic stratification affects both school activities and activities outside school system thus lower standards of education attainment among low income households. Thus, this essay relies on the chart's data from the U.S. 2008 census to make a case for a connection between education attainment and poverty by arguing that socioeconomic stratification affects school achievement.

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The structure of a household affects educational achievement. Female households have the lowest levels of education achievement while households with married couples have the highest levels of education attainment (Barro & Lee, 2013). As a result of the low proportion of education attainment in female households, the average rate of educational attainment for all households is relatively lower compared to households with married couples. Therefore, the rate of education achievement in single female households is lower than the average rate of education attainment.

Education achievement within family structures affects the rate of poverty. In female households, the percentages in poverty is lowest where education level is bachelor's degree or associate degree (Ma, Pender, & Welch, 2016). The percentage for poverty levels is a bit high in households with high school graduates and those without a high school education. The rate of poverty among families made of married couples who have a bachelor's degree and associate degree is lower in the cumulative households with a minimum qualification of a bachelor's degree than among households with an associate degree (Baum, Ma, & Payea, 2013). The poverty rate among households with college education but without a degree stands at 9%. Most of the households with a high school education or lower tend to be poor (Baum, Ma, & Payea, 2013). The poverty rate among households with high school graduates and those without high school graduates stands at 12% and 26%. The poverty rate is higher among households without a college degree yet they have attended college. It stands at 5% and 29% respectively for married couples and single female households.

Cultural deprivation is one of the sociological factors that affect educational attainment. Material deprivation refers to limited or no access to basic necessities at home. In this light, most students skip class because their parents cannot meet their needs such as food. Poor diet affects the body immunity of learners thus exposing some of them to disease-causing organisms. Exposure to disease causes the children to play truancy. Truants skip classes and have minimal contact with their teachers hence the higher percentage of poverty in U.S. because they drop out from school without meaningful reasons. In extension, social stratification allows financially stable families to privately fund quality education for their children.

By conceptualizing the female body as "the voluntary worker who helps to absorb the shocks of social cutbacks and structural adjustment," Winterich advances the argument that global proliferation of capitalism works to the detriment of women (Wichterich, 2000, p. 167). The economic realities are somewhat harsh on women and fail too adequately address their needs even as they work hard to drive the economic cog of the rapidly growing nation on earth. Globalization tends to drive women into care-based careers and professions (Sassen, 2000). Women had to make entry through the lowest paying jobs in the employment hierarchy (Maheswari & Vivek, 2016). Further, the cultural dimensions of the country view women as readily available labor. Combined with an extreme profit-driven enterprise environment, it is clear that the development of women is a bit hard in the country. If women are conditioned to receive low wages from a socio-economic dimension, it is a bit difficult to achieve equality of wages. Even today, many industries shun women on the basis that maternity leaves and other gendered identities reduce their productivity.

The development of the economy and attending economic growth has led to an increase in labor opportunities. In spite of the expansion of the labor market, the patriarchal nature of the society affects the absorption of women in the labor market (Sassen, 2000). The competitive labor market entrenches the engendered patriarchal system. While the economic reforms have increased the number of employment opportunities, women are expected to sacrifice their participation in the labor market for social care duties. Although women are not favored by the dynamics of markets, the migration of men into urban and industrial areas in search of jobs leads to the expansion of women's rights and their increased participation in the labor market. The formation of new gendered identities such as ownership rights promotes the financial empowerment of women. Consequently, economic reforms foster equitable access to resources among women.


Given that children with married parents have a higher probability of educational achievement, the state or federal government should assist the children in securing higher standards of educations. The correlation between family structure and education achievement requires a critical evaluation of the education system. Although the chart links educational achievement to poverty, it is important to conduct systemic reviews on how quality of learning affects levels of educational attainment. Such an approach is commendable to the extent that most students are unsure of what next in relation to furthering education or improving the school system.


Barro, R. J., & Lee, J. W. (2013). A new data set of educational attainment in the world, 1950-2010. Journal of development economics, 104, 184-198.

Baum, S., Ma, J., & Payea, K. (2013). Education Pays, 2013: The Benefits of Higher Education for Individuals and Society. Trends in Higher Education Series. College Board.

Braun, Y.A., 2011. The reproduction of inequality: race, class, gender, and the social organization of work at sites of large-scale development projects. Social Problems, 58(2), pp.281-303.

Ma, J., Pender, M., & Welch, M. (2016). Education Pays 2016: The Benefits of Higher Education for Individuals and Society. Trends in Higher Education Series. College Board.

Maheswari, M., & Vivek, B. (2016). Empowering women: uncovering financial inclusion barriers. Advances In Social Sciences Research Journal, 3(4)., S. (2000). Women's burden: counter-geographies of globalization and the feminization of survival. Journal of international affairs, 503-524.

Wichterich, C. (2000). The globalized woman: Reports from a future of inequality. Spinifex Press.

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