Class and Education

Class differences often appear in schools and on college campuses, yet few resources exist for dealing with class issues in these settings. Class Action has specific resources for discussing class issues in both K-12 and college environments. Visit the Created Equal page to learn more about a unique curriculum designed to talk about class issues with youth or download our Talking Class on Campus flyer for more information about our work on college campuses.

Organizations Working on Class, Education and Social Change  

Institute for Higher Education Policy
Policy reports and studies from this non-profit, non-partisan organization whose mission is to foster access and success in postsecondary education.

The Young People’s Project
YPP envisions a day when every young person — regardless of ethnicity, gender, or class — has access to a high quality education and the skills, attributes, and community support s/he needs to successfully meet the challenges of their generation.

Education for Liberation Network
The Education for Liberation Network is a national coalition of teachers, community activists, researchers, youth and parents who believe a good education should teach people—particularly low-income youth and youth of color—how to understand and challenge the injustices their communities face. The network aims to help improve the practice of Education for Liberation by bringing people together to learn from each other’s experiences.

New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCoRE) is a group of public school educators committed to fighting for social justice in our school system and society at large, by organizing and mobilizing teachers, developing curriculum, and working with community, parent, and student organizations.

Y.O. Unlimited
Our mission is to empower and motivate young people so they
may gain the educational, employment, and career advancement necessary to be successful in the workforce, in the community, and in their lives.

The Dream Program
The DREAM Program, Inc. is a mentoring organization that pairs college students with youth from affordable housing neighborhoods. Our mentoring relationships empower children to lead healthy, productive lives.

531559_171230019696581_1747913217_nMedia Discussing Inequality and Education

RSA Animate video discussing some of the issues of the current education system. It highlights some of the ways that the education system creates and perpetuates inequality and devalues our youth.

Waiting for Superman. Dir. Davis Guggenheim. Paramount Vantage, 2010.

Literature related to Class and Education 

Problems with Schools & Education in the U.S.

Archer, L., Hutchings, M., & Ross, A. (2002). Higher Education and Social Class: Issues of Exclusion and Inclusion. New York, New York: RoutledgeFalmer. 

Ball, S.J. (2003). Class strategies and the education market: The middle classes and social advantage. London and New York: RoutledgeFalmer.

Bowen, W.G., Kurzweil, M.A., & Tobin, E.M. (2005). Equity and excellence in American Higher Education. Charlottesville and London: University of Virginia Press.

Brantlinger, E. (2003). Dividing Classes: How the Middle Class Negotiates and Rationalizes School Advantage. London and New York: RoutledgeFalmer.

Golden, D. (2006). The Price of Admission: How America’s Ruling Class Buys Its Way into Elite Colleges – and Who Gets Left Outside the Gates. New York, New York: Crown Publishers Inc. 

Kozol, J. (1991). Savage Inequalities: Children in America’s Schools. New York, New York: Crown Publishers Inc. 

Lareau, A. (2000). Home Advantage: Social Class and Parental Intervention in Elementary School. Washington, D.C.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. 

Lareau, A. (2011). Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life. Berkeley, California: University of California Press.

Van Galen, J. (2007). Late to Class: Social Class and Schooling in the New Economy. Albany, New York: State University of New York Press.

Solutions, Alternatives & Best Practices

Aries, E. (2008). Race and Class Matters at an Elite College. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Temple University Press.  

Bowen, W.,  Bok, D. & Loury, G. (2000). Shape of the River. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. 

Brion-Meisels, G. et. al. (Ed.). (2010). Humanizing Education: Critical Alternatives to Reform. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard Educational Publishing Group. 

Compton-Lilly, C. (2004). Confronting Racism, Poverty, and Power: Classroom Strategies to Change the World. Portsmouth, New Hampshire: Heinemann.

Hong, S. (2011). Cord of Three Strands: A New Approach to Parent Engagement in Schools. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard Education Press.

Mapp, K. L. & Warren, M. R. (2011). A Match on Dry Grass: Community Organizing as a Catalyst for School Reform. New York, New York: Oxford University Press.