Economic Inequality In Education

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Economic inequality has become a major concern in almost every corner of the world, causing underprivileged people to be trapped in poverty with little to no chance to improve their socioeconomic status as a result of the uneven distribution of economic variables between different groups in society. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the gap between the rich and poor in its member countries has widened over the past 30 years. The average income of the richest 10% of people was about nine times greater than the income of the poorest 10% before the onset of the global economic crisis. However, inequalities, which emerge in the job market are often established during education, thus, putting those at…show more content…
Education policies, especially those that emphasizes on equity, can be one of the most impactful tools that countries have to improve their inequality level in the long run. A more equitable distribution of educational opportunities among society will lead to a more equitable distribution of labour income in a country (OECD research). In fact, people with higher level of education typically have a greater competitive advantage in the labour market regardless of the current states of the economy. Thus, education policies that focuses on equity could possibly promote higher intergenerational earnings mobility and thus, reduce income inequality over…show more content…
Although Malaysia’s income inequality is gradually decreasing, it is still relatively higher than other East Asian countries. According to the preliminary report of the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025, many education systems around the world including ours, suffer from educational disadvantage phenomenon, whereby how much students’ parents earn and where they go to school correlates with student achievement. Therefore, the Ministry of Education has committed itself to eliminating this inequity through a wide variety of initiatives, including the provision of financial assistance to disadvantaged students. However, the impact of socioeconomic status on student outcomes is less significant in Malaysia than in other education systems around the world. For example, only 10% of the Malaysian variance between schools in the PISA 2009+ assessment can be explained by socioeconomic factors, as compared to the OECD average of 55%, which indicates a far larger gap in most other countries. This is good news for Malaysia, as it shows that our education system is on its way to being truly
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