Is Education A Right Or Privilege?

By Lauren Howland. Lauren is a student at St Francis College. She lives in Letchworth, England. Please read her article and leave your thoughts and comments below.

Education is what many children are forcibly put through, whether this is in school, at home or online. A high percentage of these children, aged 4 to 18, probably do not think that they need it. They complain about their lives, thinking they deserve better.

However, in parts of the world where education is an after-thought, many would die to have a distraction from their home lives. They would love the opportunity to widen their knowledge base and become eligible for jobs in the future, ones that pays more than minimum wage.

School is underappreciated by the children who have everything handed to them, such as money, an easy home life and a loving family. These people don’t always think about their privileges because they don’t see them as blessings. They worry more about the smaller things in life because they rarely need to worry about unpromising futures.

In my opinion, education should be a right for everybody – but it’s not. Maybe this will be a possibility in the future, when people stop caring about the little things.

Imagine the opposite of your life; a continuous lack of food and drink, a home where you aren’t welcome, a family that can’t do anything to improve your living conditions, and to never be given the chance to go to school. Would you feel cheated? I don’t think so, because someone living this life would have never experienced the luxuries we take for granted. They do not know what it feels like to ride in a car or have a nutritious school lunch, so they have nothing to compare it to and, yet, they don’t complain.

Do you think that if somebody’s life was nearly the complete opposite to ours, they would ever be asked that constant question we hear throughout our teenage years; “so what do you want to do in the future?” This question gets on ours nerves but, on the other hand, it also worries us, because there are so many options. What do we want? We can be anything we want to be thanks to the endless options available to us. However, this repetitive question, that some of us find extremely hard to reply to, is a question that others will never hear. This is because they don’t have the opportunity to acquire the skills and understanding to be anything more than what their lives are leading up to, which has limitations and next to no choice.

From a young girl’s perspective, who lives in a poor area and has been given the chance to attend a school, she would think of this opportunity as an amazing privilege. This would be great if it happened to her, but it should not just be for a handful of children. A child should not have to earn their place in a school. We should all be guaranteed an area to learn, socialise and grow.

I, when living my normal life, don’t think about the things I have in comparison to others, but I should do more often. I am privileged to go to school where, on a daily, teachers spend their time and effort trying to teach me everything I need to know to have a successful future; to go on and have a well-paid job, a family I can provide for and an overall enjoyable life.

A person who feels that one life is more important than another, should appreciate what some people’s lives consist of. If they could witness, themselves, the contrasts of life around the world, maybe they would open their minds. If they put themselves in other’s situations, they would see how unfair the world can be.

In conclusion, education should be a right, not something unattainable for unlucky children. Everybody should receive the same treatment and the chance to have an extraordinary life, filled with everything they hope to achieve, because all lives matter and one life is not more deserving of benefitting from education than another.

24 comments on “Is Education A Right Or Privilege?

  1. Caroline Jones on

    Great insight into how much we take for granted – really well written Lauren. It’s given me lots to think about. Thank you.

  2. Ellie Gravestock on

    Very good article Lauren. You make very persausive aurguments for education being a right not a priveledge. It’s also obvious you appreciate your own education.

  3. Paula Kerr on

    Interesting and well argued article Lauren. Made me think of some courageous friends of ours who set up a charity to advance the education, training and life skills of young people in Mozambique in memory of their son Thomas, who died tragically in a road accident in 2009, just as he was about to go to university. The charity is called The Thomas Marshall Education Fund.

  4. Simon Kerr on

    Good piece Lauren. As you state in your conclusion – “education should be a right, not something unattainable for unlucky children.” Well done for making us stop and think about this issue.

  5. Christina Kirby on

    Thank you for a very thought provoking read Lauren and great that you can think beyond your own experiences and empathise with others around the world who may not have the same opportunities that we have.

  6. Lisa on

    I enjoyed reading this thought provoking subject and shall get my son to read it too. Maybe, I’ll stop asking him what HE wants to do now. Thank you for the tip!


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