ERIC Number: ED344728
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991
Reference Count: N/A
On Teaching the Rural Poor of the Northeast: Suggestions for Teachers.
Eddy, Gregory L.
This paper reviews the literature on rural poverty in the Northeast relating to rural education and makes suggestions for educators who teach the rural poor. Against the theory of a "culture of poverty," which suggests that the rural poor avoid hard work by choice, the more recent view is that the poor often accept the Puritan work ethic and value hard work. The rural poor realize the worth of education and goals for social mobility and encourage these values in their children. However, there remains a statistical correlation between educational attainment and poverty. Approximately, one-third of the rural poor population will achieve to some extent; another third could achieve given the opportunity and means through education; the last third are much less likely to benefit from education due to their emotional or intellectual impairment. Despite the varying value for education held by the rural population, the notion of a "culture of poverty" is misleading. Recommendations for rural teachers to increase educational effectiveness are: (1) to "explode a societal myth" that education is sufficient to eradicate poverty; (2) to acknowledge blame along with parents when there is school failure among the poor; (3) to build a new relationship with poor parents based upon an understanding of parental attitudes; (4) to avoid negative stereotypes toward children; and (5) to change schools and social systems in order to assist poor students in their educational efforts towards social mobility. (LP)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: United States (Northeast)