The “Haves” and the “Have Nots”

So, I’m browsing jobs (an every day occurrence) and I come across a listing for a position at a private co-ed K-12 school.

I look at the “facts and figures” page to get general insight on student body and staff. I read the page and I’m blown away as I look at the SAT scores, National Merit and Achievement semifinalists, the colleges their alumni attend and the 2012-2013 tuition. I browse their center for teaching page and the cooperative learning they’ve partnered with a local institute to provide for their students. 

For only $22,270 (for grades 6-12), your student can get a top notch education. With an endowment of nearly $250,000,000, this school can afford to award “full rides”, but their facts and figures page indicates that only 15% of the student body was awarded scholarships (at an average of $15,000, so still not a full ride for all of the financial aid recipients). So then, the parents/guardians of 85% of enrolled students paid the full cost of tuition out of pocket. Y’all…$22K out of pocket. Who can afford that?

I don’t even know if I have one. The only thing I could think is, “and the rich stay rich.” The colleges listed were some of the top in the nation. I’m talking Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, Vanderbilt, GA Tech, Wake Forest, Amherst, Dartmouth, Duke, Georgetown…

So this is my thinking.

The parents can afford to send their children to schools like this and in turn they go to the top universities in the nation. In turn, their children are exposed to learning experiences and the alumni bases that fuel some of the most lucrative careers in the nation. Most graduate with connections and above average starting salaries. Most will grow in their careers, either through good old fashioned hard work or through networking (or both). They will in turn send their children to an excellent grade school and the cycle will continue.

And the thing is, I’m not even mad. People play the hands they are dealt in life. It’s just interesting to evaluate, ponder and toss around. A lot of times, it’s the just roll of the dice, based largely on who your parents are, what they make, how they live and what they value.

This doesn’t discount everyone who made their own way or rose to prominence essentially on their own. On the contrary, it makes it even more remarkable

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