The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Washington, D.C. Schools:
Reform in Favor of the Wealthy

Aug 22, 2011

In one district of Washington, D.C. public schools (called Ward 8) only 28% of children can read at their appropriate grade level. In Ward 3, the rate is 84% reading at grade level.

What is the difference between Ward 8 and Ward 3 in Washington, D.C.? The difference is exactly the same as the difference in successful and unsuccessful schools all across the country: money. The schools where students have higher scores are high income districts, with more money spent on the schools.

Ward 8 parents have median income of $31,000 while Ward 3 parents have median income of more than $97,000. Ward 3 schools were given twice the number of “highly effective” teachers, as measured by the D.C. school system’s own accounting system when compared with schools in low income districts.

Five years after beginning a program of school “reform,” Washington, D.C. schools show exactly what “reform” really means. The education given to children is based on their parents’ income.