Stories about life in Liddonfield housing project and its impact on the Northeast Philadelphia neighborhood of Upper Holmesburg. These true stories reveal how government policy affected the lives of real people, from the project residents to area homeowners during the 5 decades of Liddonfield’s existence. Stories and articles are written by a former resident of the project.


Rosemary Reeves, Blogger, standing on Philadelphia Skyline

May 7, 2012

How Schools Keep Poor Kids Poor

Poor Kids Don't Perceive Money the Way Your Kids Do.

When they can't afford to have their school picture taken or go on that class trip, poor kids start learning that money is beyond their reach.  They begin to associate money (or rather, lack of money) as a continuing stream of negative experiences.  At home they hear their parents fight, argue and cry over money.  They see the worried look on their mom and dad's faces every time a bill comes in the mail.  Over and over again, they feel heightened tension in the household as Dad's meager paycheck or welfare money is running dry. They watch their parents scrounge for pennies that might have fallen at the bottom of a purse or under the cushions of the couch.  Poor kids experience frequent anxiety as their lives revolve around the elusive dollar bill.  Mom and Dad don't realize just how much kids pick up on their constant focus on lack of money and their helplessness to control it.  Teachers and school officials seem unaware that children develop perceptions about money by the time they reach middle-school.  Because schools don't intervene, those perceptions can carry into adulthood, continuing the cycle of poverty.

Teachers should ask kids how they feel about money and teach them ways to budget, manage and control the flow of money in their households. 

RELATED STORIES:  Housing Project Family

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