My Blog List

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Junior theme

For my junior theme topic I will be researching standardized testing. More specifically I will be looking at why schools in areas of wealth tend to do better than schools with populations that have less money. If standardized testing is supposed to be equal and every child should have the same opportunity to perform on the test then why do some areas do worse on these tests. When the  "No child left behind" act was passed it was supposed to help kids who were underprivileged, but it has made no difference and I want to understand why that is happening. I will provide a link that I think shows the difference in a fantastic way.
http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2014/10/07/sat-scores-and-income-inequality-how-wealthier-kids-rank-higher/

Privilege

Another topic that is heavily discussed in the book Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich is "privilege" and how some people are favored because of their race. As someone who is white Barbara Ehrenreich discovers that she is given some advantages and some jobs that only white people get. She says that to look professional "It helps to be white" (13). People have a preference of whites when they are hiring. She finds that she is favored because of her skin color in almost ever way. Most of the jobs in the back are given to immigrants and when she starts her job as a maid the majority of the people working there are immigrants. She discovers that in these jobs where you are barely scrapping by it is even harder for people who are not white.

Friday, March 11, 2016

What it's like being poor

In the book Nickel and Dimed, by Barbara Ehrenreich, she discovers what it is like to live with a minimum wage paying job. She discovers many different struggles during this time, but in this blog I am focusing on her deffiniton of poverty. According to the U.S. census in 2015 the amount of money made by one person to determine if they were poor or beneath the poverty line was 12,331 dollars (census.gov). This is not a lot of money even to be considered poor.
As Barbara Ehrenreich finds out, it is almost impossible to live your life with a minimum wage job, but that is not the only thing that she feels comes with being poor. She finds that's she is constantly struggling with many things. The one that she brings up most constantly is pain. She is always sore and has to take a ton of pain drugs to help her get through the he day: "I start tossing back drugstore-brand ibuprofens as if they were vitamin C" (33). She is always feeling down, but knows she has to battle through it in order to keep living paycheck to paycheck. It's not only the physical pain, but also the mental pain. She never gets a rest and that wears her down mentally as well. At the end of her time working in Florida she just leaves her job: "I leave. I don't walk out, I just leave" (48). At this point she can't take it anymore and has to just walk away she is so burned out. So not only is it almost impossible to live on a minimum wage job, but it is almost impossible to cope with the struggles of everyday life and that is what she adds to her definition of being poor.