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The Importance of Making the Well-Being of Children in Poverty a Priority

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Essay title: The Importance of Making the Well-Being of Children in Poverty a Priority

“The Importance of Making the Well-being of Children in Poverty a Priority”

Summary

Hurricane Katrina exposed the world to a side of America that is often ignored or forgotten. This side of America is where people live in poverty and struggle to meet their basic needs. This article focuses primarily on children in Mississippi and highlights the effect of poverty on children’s well-being and their future academic struggles. Sufficient planning to ensure their well-being and development during early childhood has not taken place. The article also provides evidence of the importance of funding pre-kindergarten programs to ensure the process of preparing children academically. Studies show that children from low-income families are more likely to suffer from preventable illnesses, fail in school, become teenage parents and become involved with the justice system. Finally, with the reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act, legislation changes the focus of the law from an emphasis on testing to a focus on meeting the needs of all children, so they can truly be successful in school. In 2005, state legislatures approved 600 million dollars for pre-kindergarten funding, the largest single-year increase in the past five years. There are still nine states that have yet to fund pre-kindergarten programs and two states that actually decreased funding. Mississippi and surrounding states fall into both of these categories. With careful planning, taking care of the needs of our young citizens could possibly be a factor that would break this cycle of poverty. We can not let another child be left behind to begin a life of poverty without intervening to give the child every opportunity for success.

Reflection

As a child of a New Orleans native, this article hit close to home with me because my entire family was affected by Katrina. I never went to school in Louisiana nor did I have any personal contact with the poverty there, but I was aware of these situations before reading this article. The title of the article, “The Importance of Making the Well-being of Children in Poverty a Priority” describes the article perfectly. The importance of the article was to inform America about how poverty is affecting today’s children and what is being done to resolve this problem; but, it is still not enough. By using America’s latest disaster, Hurricane Katrina as an example to show the effects of poverty, the authors allowed many readers to empathize with children who live in poverty and will hopefully make a stand to help those in need. Although many Americans are in favor

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