A Tale of Two Cities: Inequity in MA Schools

School Funding | 12/06/2018

Brianna Aloisio
Policy and Government Affairs Manager

What does inequity in Massachusetts public schools look like? It looks like the lives of José and Kirin – two boys who live less than 30 miles apart yet whose educations are vastly different because of resources available at their respective schools.

José, 1st grader, lives in Chelsea, MA, and has 25 students in his class with one teacher.

Kirin, 2nd grader, lives in the Dover-Sherborn district and has 14 students in his class with two teachers – one who works with everyone and one who spends extra time with students who need additional support.

José goes straight home at the end of the day because there’s no spot for him in the after-school program. There’s a long waitlist because it’s shared between four schools. 

Kirin stays after school some days to do his homework and play with friends.

José’s mom wants to connect with other families at the school, but there’s no parent association and parent facilitators were eliminated due to budget cuts.

Kirin’s parents are very involved with his school through an active parent association. They hear from his teachers regularly about his progress and the teachers write personal notes about his homework. Kirin’s principal has coffee hours and every Friday morning parents are invited to join an assembly where the principal gives updates.

José gets distracted sometimes, so his mom asked the school to develop a plan to improve his reading and writing skills. The school responded, but there’s still no plan in place to help him.

Kirin is excelling at school and currently reading above grade level thanks to in-class literacy coaching.

José and his mom are worried about future budget cuts and whether he’ll get the support he needs.

Kirin and his parents love his school and all the resources and extracurricular activities it offers.

José and Kirin have unlimited potential, and it’s up to us to make sure they’re both getting the high-quality educations they deserve. Sign the letter urging Gov. Charlie Baker to fix school funding now!  

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