Parenting Tips

Does Southern California have Unique Parenting Challenges?

Jenny Many Editorial Team

Southern California is undergoing challenges at K-12 schools. With a shortage of staff and not enough funding in schools, parents are having a hard time teaching their kids. Without adequate schools for children to have primary education, many families are moving. Other states have relatively better education quality compared to Southern California.

Education Issues in Southern California 

The main problem is that there is a lack of resources to teach school kids. The schools are relatively expensive, and the recession has been hard on California. There is also a severe scarcity of teachers and teaching with enough teaching experience are rare to find in the region. In the USA, Southern California has the lowest per-pupil spending for the student to teachers, and this has been a severe threat for parents.

Parents are facing numerous challenges because of the lack of schools. Many parents are looking to home-school their kids, which is also a burden on the parents along with their day to day job. Lack of time to teach their kids and not enough playtime, is an obstacle that parents in Southern California are facing.

The State budget has also been tight and is one of the lowest in the nation for schools. Research has found that almost 83% of locals consider education quality to be a problem. Children are also facing a hard time to cope with such losses in their education. Children are finding it hard to understand various subjects that even parents are not proficient at teaching. Parents of lower socio-ethnic groups are facing greater hardship, whereas wealthier parents can afford private education which is faring better.

How are Parents Combating the Education Problem?

Most families have chosen to move to a different location so that children can have adequate education. Underprivileged families find it harder to move, as parents are working two to three jobs to make ends meet. Single parents in Southern California are also finding it hard to provide enough care for their children. Some families are moving to Austin, Texas, and Boston where schools are faring much better than Southern California. Because most are low-income families in Southern California, they have challenges with moving to a better city.

Parents cannot afford tuition and other child care facilities. Such shortage has led to gentrification in Southern California with lower income neighbourhoods being displaced.  It is understood that Asian and White families are more privileged in Southern California than other ethnic groups. There is a severe disparity between ethnic groups and class structures which is evident in Southern California which is adding to parental problems.

Why Is There a Teacher Shortage?

There is a teacher shortage because of the difference in supply and demand structures in the region. Because of the funding shortage, not many teachers prefer to work for less money. Most educated teachers leave for work in other states that have better pay. Teaching is a trained profession and California is known for its technical background.

Not many teachers are trained in California and do not opt for the profession because of low job prospects. Mathematics and science have the most moderate teacher shortage in California. Parents are particularly disheartened by this shortage because they find it challenging to school their children. The schools are also not managed well, because most of the schools are in disrepair. The state has to invest almost $112 billion into re-building K-12 schools to its satisfactory condition.

Poor Performing Students

Because of the teacher related factors, children are finding it hard to perform well at school. This adds additional pressure on parenting and parenting styles can become more destructive. Children with disabilities have a more significant problem in learning at schools because they need to be in special-need schools which have a more significant problem. There are hardly any teachers available for special needs in Southern California. Such issues indicate that parents will have to take full responsibility for the education of their children.

Many children become disruptive and disoriented because of such issues. Alcohol and drug use in Southern California schools are also high because of these issues. Unfortunately, parents do not have enough resources to train their children. One of the best ways a child learns discipline is through good schools, and this is not available for most families in California. Not having suitable teachers at school can contribute to bad behavior in students.

Family-related issues are also essential but living in poverty can be harmful to both parents and children. The child does not get enough attention that they need which will be very dangerous for their future. Most of these children also do not attend college or universities because of their poor school performance. Many times, even the parents will not be educated to train their children to find suitable jobs in the future. Such issues have led to low-income situations in Southern California. 

How to Improve Education in Southern California

The state should take responsibility for providing facilities for parents and children. Schools in Sweden and New Zealand offer free education until K-12 and have one of the best education systems. Education policy in Southern California needs to be seriously altered and studied by the government. If Southern California wants to improve its education standing in the USA, it needs to provide funding and resources to children. The government can look at how the rest of the world in combating such problems and providing additional facilities for parents.

The country is gaining sufficient tax money from the people of the USA. Some of this tax can be used to improve education in high schools. Promoting teacher training and offering more salaries to teachers will be a great advantage to Southern California. If such policies are not adopted, parents have no choice but to relocate to a different location with better facilities. Combating drug use in the region will also be a significant factor in improving education. To understand this, the first thing California needs to do is accept that it has a problem.


← Back to Jenny's Journal