The best way to eliminate poverty is job creation, job growth, and job retention. The Asian Development Bank has the best concise synopsis of the link between Education and Poverty
6. The relationship between education and poverty reduction is very clear: educated people have higher income earning potential, and are better able to improve the quality of their lives. Persons with at least a basic education are more likely to avail of a range of social services, and to participate more actively in local and national government through voting and community involvement. They are less likely to be marginalized within the larger society. Education empowers; it helps people become more proactive, gain control over their lives, and widen the range of available choices (Box 2). In fact, the opposite of marginalization is empowerment, and basic education is one of the keys to empowerment, both for individuals and groups.10 The combination of increased earning ability, political and social empowerment, and enhanced capacity to participate in community governance is a powerful instrument for helping break the poverty cycle. In fact, education is the primary vehicle by which economically and socially marginalized adults and children can lift themselves out of poverty and obtain the means to participate fully in their communities.11
7. Poverty is both a cause and an effect of insufficient access to or completion of quality education. Children of poor families are less likely to enroll in and complete schooling because of the associated costs of attending school, even when it is provided free. The cost of uniforms, supplies, and transportation may well be beyond the means of a poor family, especially when the family has several children of school age. This means that choices have to be made, and the choice is often to drop out of school or, worse yet, to deny schooling to girls while enrolling the boys, thereby contributing directly to maintaining the inferior status of women. And as poor children who are enrolled grow older, the opportunity cost (their lost labor and the foregone income it may entail) becomes greater, thus increasing the likelihood of abandoning school. Dropping out of school because of poverty virtually guarantees perpetuation of the poverty cycle since the income-earning potential of the child is reduced, not to mention overall productivity, receptivity to change, and capacity to improve quality of life. Lack of education perpetuates poverty, and poverty constrains access to schooling. Eliminating poverty requires providing access to quality education.
For a good article about education and poverty which has a good bibliography, go to Poverty and Education, Overview
USA Today has an excellent summation of the tax cut bill in the article, What Does The Tax Deal Mean To You? Among the provisions are:
A cut in Social Security payroll taxes
The compromise decreases Social Security payroll taxes to 4.2% from 6.2% for one year. The White House estimates the payroll tax cut will reduce taxes by $120 billion next year for 155 million workers.
The payroll tax cut will save a worker with annual income of $40,000 about $800 a year. A worker with $70,000 in income will save $1,400.
Unlike the income tax cuts, which benefit only workers who earn enough to owe federal income taxes, the payroll tax cut affects just about every working American.
Other individual tax breaks extended through 2011:
•A provision that allows taxpayers who itemize to deduct state and local sales taxes. This provision gives taxpayers the option of deducting state and local sales taxes instead of state income taxes. This provision mainly benefits taxpayers in the seven states that impose no income tax, but charge state sales taxes.
•A deduction of up to $250 for educators who spend their own money on classroom supplies. This is an above-the-line deduction, so teachers don’t have to itemize to claim it.
•A tax credit for taxpayers who make energy-efficient improvements to their homes. However, the legislation pares back a more generous 30% credit included in the economic stimulus bill. Homeowners will be eligible for a 10% credit, up to specific maximum amounts, if they install insulation or energy-efficient windows or roofs. Taxpayers will also be eligible for credits ranging from $50 to $150 for purchases of energy-efficient fans, water heaters and furnaces.
13-month extension of jobless benefits
The agreement extends jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed by 13 months, through the end of 2011. Without the extension, 7 million unemployed workers would have lost their benefits by next November….
Child tax credits, education breaks
The child tax credit will be extended for two years. This credit allows eligible families to reduce their federal tax bill by up to $1,000 for each qualifying child under age 17. In addition, the expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit included in the economic stimulus package will continue for two more years.
The agreement also extends several tax breaks designed to reduce the cost of paying for college, including:
•The American Opportunity Credit, which is designed to offset the cost of college. The credit, extended through 2012, provides a tax credit of up to $2,500 per college student per year. Taxpayers can claim the credit for up to 100% of the first $2,000 in qualified college costs and 25% of the next $2,000. To get the full credit, you’ll need to spend at least $4,000 on qualified expenses.
Forty percent of the credit is refundable, so a low-income family that doesn’t owe federal taxes could receive a check from the government for up to $1,000.
In addition, the income limits on this credit are broader than limits on the Hope and Lifetime Learning Credits, which have been around since the Clinton administration. Married couples with modified adjusted gross income of up to $160,000 can claim the full credit.
Moi has no comment regarding this bill other than it is what it is. What government should be focused on is job creation. It is difficult, if not impossible to create and support a family without a job. Strong and functioning families are a key element to a child’s educational success.
There are two educations. One should teach us how to make a living and the other how to live.
America’s future will be determined by the home and the school. The child becomes largely what he is taught; hence we must watch what we teach, and how we live.
If all the rich and all of the church people should send their children to the public schools they would feel bound to concentrate their money on improving these schools until they met the highest ideals.
–Susan B. Anthony
The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living from the dead.
Those who educate children well are more to be honored than they who produce them; for these only gave them life, those the art of living well.
Education is an ornament in prosperity and a refuge in adversity.
Dr. Wilda may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
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