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Poverty 21 st Century. Dr. Katherine Sprott Sandy Fernandez, M.S. Midwest Equity Assistance Center (Kansas State University). October 25, 2010. Introductions. Dr. Katherine Sprott Sandra L. Fernandez Ronna Olivier. Introduce the Technology. Webinar page Left side: Chart box

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Poverty 21 st Century

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Poverty 21 st century


21st Century

Dr. Katherine Sprott

Sandy Fernandez, M.S.

Midwest Equity Assistance Center

(Kansas State University)

October 25, 2010



  • Dr. Katherine Sprott

  • Sandra L. Fernandez

  • Ronna Olivier

Introduce the technology

Introduce the Technology

  • Webinar page

    • Left side: Chart box

      • Box: questions

        • Questions in the box will be answered during webinar

Http www facebook com


Midwest Equity Assistance Center




  • Myths/Realities

  • Statistics

  • Defining Poverty Deficit / Asset Models

  • Identify qualities that under-resourced students need to be successful in school.

  • Provide strategies for increasing student achievement.

Next session – November 15

Myths realities stereotypes

Myths/Realities: Stereotypes

  • Stereotypes are generalizations about a group that are applied to individuals.

Myth or reality what we think we know

Myth or Reality(What We Think We Know)

  • Poor people are unmotivated and have weak work ethics.

  • 83% percent of the children from low income families have at least one employed parent.



Stereotype: Laziness

ah, but: According to the Economic Policy Institute (2002), poor working adults spend more hours workingper week on average than their wealthier counterparts.

Gaining employment is due to the lack of skills in many situations. (Rural vs. Urban)

Myth or reality what we think we know1

Myth or Reality(What We Think We Know)

2. Poor people are uninvolved in their children’s learning , largely because they do not value education.

2. Low-income parent hold the same attitudes about education that wealthy parents do.

Don t value education

Don’t Value Education

Stereotype: Don’t Value Education

Ah, but: Low-income parents hold the exact same attitudes about education as wealthy parents (Compton-Lilly, 2003; Hale-Benson, 1986; Lareau & Horvat, 1999; Leichter, 1978; Varenne & McDermott, 1986).

Myth or reality what we think we know2

Myth or RealityWhat We Think We Know

3. Poor people are linguistically deficient have lack of intelligence.

3. All languages varieties are highly structured with complex grammatical rules.

Language knowledge deficient

Language/Knowledge Deficient

Stereotype: Language- Knowledge Deficient

Ah, but: Linguists have known for decades that all varieties of English (such as “Black English vernacular” or Appalachian varieties) are equally complex in structure and grammar (Gee, 2004; Hess, 1974; Miller, Cho, & Bracey, 2005).

An abundance of communication is expressed in other ways.

Myth or reality what we think we know3

Myth or RealityWhat We Think We Know

4. Poor people tend to abuse drugs and alcohol.

4. Poor people are no more likely than their wealthier counterparts to abuse alcohol or drugs.

Substance abuse

Substance Abuse

Stereotype: Substance Abuse

Ah, but: Alcohol abuse is far more prevalent among wealthy people than poor people (Galea, Ahern, Tracy, & Vlahov, 2007). And drug use equally distributed across poor, middle class, and wealthy communities (Saxe, Kadushin, Tighe, Rindskopf, & Beveridge, 2001).

Myth or reality what we think we know4

Myth or RealityWhat We Think We Know

3. Poor people are involved in violent crime.

3. Poor people crimes are more visible to in media.

Crime and violence

Crime and Violence

Stereotype: Crime and Violence

Ah, but: Poor people do not commit more crime than wealthy people—they only commit more visible crime. Furthermore, white collar crime results in much greater economic (and life) losses than so-called “violent” crime.



What is the origin of stereotypes

What Is the Origin of Stereotypes?

  • Media

  • Culture

  • Geographical/regional

  • Peers

  • Historically/ passed on by family

  • Generationally passed on by family

What can we do

What Can We Do?

  • Confront our own “mental baggage” about students.

  • Reject deficit theory and help students and colleagues unlearn stereotypes.

  • Never assume all students have equitable access to resources.

  • Ensure that learning materials do not stereotype poor people.

    • Gorski (2008), Thompson (2010)

Reflective questions

Reflective Questions

  • Who am I and who are we in terms of the students we serve?

  • Why do we do what we do?

  • How will we develop and use the skills that we have to successful educate our students?

  • In what specific behaviors will I or we engage to be more effective?

    • Lindsey, Karns, Myatt (2010)

Reflection question

Reflection Question

Is poverty an individual experience or a systemic condition?

Individual and systemic

Individual and Systemic

Rothstein, R. (2007), Gorksi, P. (2008)

National poverty

National Poverty

  • “A Blueprint for Reform: The Reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Act” (2010)

    • 20% of elementary school students attend high poverty schools

      • 14% White

      • 34% Black

      • 46% Hispanic

      • 4% Asian

      • 2% American Indian

    • 6% of secondary school students attend high poverty schools

      • 11% White

      • 34% Black

      • 44% Hispanic

      • 4% Asian

      • 3% American Indian

State poverty 5 17 year olds

State Poverty5-17 year olds

  • Iowa

    • 10.5%

  • Kansas

    • 13.5%

  • Missouri

    • 21.0%

  • Nebraska

    • 11.4%

National Center for Education Statistics (2007)

Educators nationally

Educators Nationally

  • Teachers in high poverty schools

    • 62% White

    • 16% Black

    • 18% Hispanic

  • Teachers in low poverty schools

    • 93% White

    • 3% Hispanic

    • 2% Black

A Blueprint for Reform (2010)

Educational attainment

Educational Attainment

  • High Poverty Teachers

    • Lower attainment of master degrees for both elementary and secondary level

      • Secondary Level

        • 38% had masters degree vs. 52% in low poverty

    • Both Elementary and Secondary level teachers had less than 3 years teaching experience

Educators locally

Educators Locally

  • In your local schools, districts and classrooms, what does your data imply?

  • How are students served?

Students nationally

Students Nationally

  • Race/ethnicity

    • 14% White

    • 34% Black

    • 46% Hispanic

    • 4% Asian

    • 2% American Indian

Students by race ethnicity

Students by Race/Ethnicity

  • Iowa

    • White 10.5%

    • Black 37.4%

    • Hispanic 28.0

    • Other 21.1%

  • Kansas

    • White 12.1%

    • Black 28.5%

    • Hispanic 33.4%

    • Other 18.9%

  • Missouri

    • White 12.9%

    • Black 32.4%

    • Hispanic 35.6%

    • Other 25.4%

  • Nebraska

    • White 10.3%

    • Black 24.45

    • Hispanic 24.9%

    • Other 13.6%

Kaiser State Health Facts 2007-2008

What can we do1

What can we do?

  • Start with your data. (Ed Trust)

    • Teacher Certification

    • Experience

    • Licensure performance

    • Value Added measures the growth of individual students using standardized achievement tests.

    • Value Added scores reflect the academic growth of each student in each content area from one year to the next

    • Value Added scores eliminate traditional reasons for success or failure on achievement tests (race, ability, socioeconomic status, etc...)

What we can do

What We Can Do?

  • Student attendance

  • Drop-out rates

  • Graduation rates

  • Credit earned for graduation (D,F, or I

  • Enrollment in advance placement, gifted and Algebra I

  • Suspension and expulsion rate

  • Special Education

  • Bilingual Education



Picture insights

Picture Insights!!!

  • Generate a list of thoughts in group.

  • Share the group thoughts.

  • Analyze the thoughts

Poverty 21 st century

Reflect and identify the characteristics of the picture on facebook discussion. (The picture will be posted on facebook as well).

Questions thank you

Questions/ Thank You

  • Dr. Katherine Sprott

  • Kansas State University

    (Midwest Equity Assistance Center)

  • krs8888@ksu.edu

  • 785-532-6408

  • Sandra Fernendez, MS.

  • Kansas State University

    (Midwest Equity Assistance Center)

  • sfdz@ksu.edu

  • 785-532-6408

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