Equity and Access to Public Education Paper

Equity and Access to Public Education
Equity and Access to Public Education
Equity and Access to Public Education

Equity and Access to Public Education

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Assignment 3: Research Paper Part 2 – The Literature Review

Due Week 7 and worth 200 points

If you have ever collected coins, stamps, or shoes, you end up with an assortment of items that are similar in topic (e.g., shoes) but also vary a little (some have heals, laces, different colors, and patterns). Building a literature review is similar to a collection in that you have collected articles on your research topic and are going to write about the similarities and differences you found in the articles.

For this assignment, you will create the second part of your research paper. The literature review should consist of a total of seven to ten (7-10) articles related to your research topic. These articles may include any articles you have previously found throughout this course. You should use the headings below for the sections of your paper.

Write a three to four (3-4) page paper in which you:

Identify two to three (2-3) common themes in the literature.
Contrast the findings and results of the literature.
Identify gaps in the literature.
Summarize the literature as it relates to your topic.
Include seven to ten (10) peer-reviewed quantitative or qualitative articles related to your topic.

Your assignment must follow these formatting requirements:

Be typed, double spaced, using Times New Roman font (size 12), with one-inch margins on all sides; citations and references must follow APA format. Check with your professor for any additional instructions.
Include a cover page containing the title of the assignment, the student’s name, the professor’s name, the course title, and the date. The cover page and the reference page are not included in the required assignment page length.

The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:

Determine the appropriateness of peer-reviewed literature to support research topics.
Use technology and information resources to research issues related to educational research methods.
Use quantitative and / or qualitative approaches to create research topics.
Analyze research methodologies that support specific research topics.
Evaluate components of a research proposal.
Write clearly and concisely about educational research methods using proper writing mechanics



It is essential to consider the fact that the welfare of different economies lies heavily upon the systems and strucures developed within a nation’s public education. Throughout the history of America, it is essential to consider that the government has put emphasis in the provision of equal and accessible high-quality free education in public schools since without this systems, the way of life would be a disaster (Al-Lamki, 2002). Access and equity in public education therefore remains one of the fundamental elements in the nation’s democratic system of governance that is based upon the pillars of civic responsibilities and individual rights which requires that there is an effective education system.

However, it is essential to consider that America is facing challenges in regards to the provision of this democratic right. The nation has experienced challenges in ensuring that every child in America has an access to an equalized public education (Willems, & Bossu, 2012). This therefore requires that proper structures are developed to determine the areas that need to be amended in order to develop an effective educational system in America. This paper therefore seeks to conduct a literature review on the concept of equity and access to public education.

Equity and Access to Public Education

As determined, education remains one of the fundamental human rights that provides the youths with the power to benefit from prosperity. Education has the capacity to break even the poverty cycle, a factor that would impact the economic and social development of a nation (Al-Lamki, 2002). This therefore determines that every citizen should benefit from the opportunities presented by education that should be developed to meet their learning needs.

It is therefore essential to determine that the fulfilment of an accessible and equitable educational therefore requires that appropriate approaches are developed towards empowering the society to confer with the responsibility of respecting and building upon the collective culture, spiritual and linguistic heritage including the promotion of education to impact the cause of social justice, environmental protection, the tolerance towards political, social and religious systems within the society (Al-Lamki, 2002).

Literature Review

The element of equal access and equity in education remains a fundamental issue in American democracy. This notion is believed to have found origin from the scriptures according to (Asplund, et.al.2008) where it is stated that all people are created equally before God and the law, a factor that sets up the expectation that every individual has a right to influence the course of democracy, and to reap the fruits of a good society through education (pp.262).

According to Bragg, & Durham (2012), over the past years, it has been noted that in public education, the primary enrolments of students has grown significantly, a factor that steadily represents an annual growth rate of 0.7%. It is however essential to consider the fact that the enrolment of girls was noted to have grown faster as compared to that of boys (pp.107). The male/female ratio of enrollment in America has over time faced the element of parity over time. These differences in enrolments have therefore seen a single gender benefit from education as compared to the other gender.

On the other hand, education should be considered as a great equalizer and ought to be used to level the playing field with the aim of mitigating the increasing rates of inequality Gilbert, & Heller (2013) supports this point by pointing out that education should be offered to student irrespective of their color, race, gender, national origins, religion, and social status (pp.418). Students in this case need to have access to educational resources that include strong teachers, technological and instructional materials, safe school facilities, and extracurricular programs.

A fair and equitable dispensation of education therefore remains one of the fundamental ways that allows a state ensure that appropriate approaches have been put in place to improve this objective. The manner in which the society educates the children touches the souls of different citizens in most nations (Harper, Patton, & Wooden, 2009). This author therefore alleges that in order to achieve an equitable access to public education, there is a need to equalize resources, a factor that calls for the federal government in ensuring that funding’s are equitable done in public schools. Additionally this view is supported by Kisker, & Oulcalt (2005) who alleges that educational institutions also have an obligation in ensuring that a shared mission is shared that would end the predictive value of class, gender, race, and special capacities of students by articulating approaches of including the community and families in spurring this process.

In accordance to the views of these authors, it is essential to consider that the common theme that stands out across their views is in relation to the need for an equitable access to public education that requires a collective approach in handling (Heilig, Reddick, Hamilton, & Dietz, 2010). The authors point that the federal government plays the central role in equitably funding learning institutions, a factor that depicts that the element of equity I also impacted by the manner in which institutions are funded. On the other hand, the authors also meet at an agreement on the purposes of education that involves preparing the youths to grow in knowledge and take their opportunities in the society.

It is however essential to consider the fact that the author’s views contrast in the manner in which the element of equity and access can be achieved within educational institutions. Some of the authors believe that the primary approach of ensuring that equity and access is achieved in education is through the inclusion of different structures that include the society into solving this problem (Leach, 2013). On the other hand, other authors believe that this factor can be achieved when the state makes amends in it funding approaches. It is in this case essential to consider the fact that a gap therefore stands in determining an effective approach of ensuring that the element of equity and access is achieved in education.


As determined in this study, the welfare of different economies lies heavily upon the systems and structures developed within a nation’s public education (Perna, Gerald, Baum, & Milem, 2007). Access and equity in public education therefore remains one of the fundamental elements in the nation’s democratic system of governance that is based upon the pillars of civic responsibilities and individual rights which requires that there is an effective education system. It is therefore significant to note that this approach requires the inclusion of several factors in achieving this goal.


Al-Lamki, S. M. (2002). Higher Education in the Sultanate of Oman: the challenge of access, equity and privatization. Journal Of Higher Education Policy & Management, 24(1), 75-86. doi:10.1080/13600800220130770

Asplund, R., Adbelkarim, O. B., & Skalli, A. (2008). An equity perspective on access to, enrolment in and finance of tertiary education. Education Economics, 16(3), 261-274.

Bragg, D. D., & Durham, B. (2012). Perspectives on Access and Equity in the Era of (Community) College Completion. Community College Review, 40(2), 106-125.

Gilbert, C. K., & Heller, D. E. (2013). Access, Equity, and Community Colleges: The Truman Commission and Federal Higher Education Policy from 1947 to 2011. Journal Of Higher Education, 84(3), 417-443.

Harper, S. R., Patton, L. D., & Wooden, O. S. (2009). Access and Equity for African American Students in Higher Education: A Critical Race Historical Analysis of Policy Efforts. Journal Of Higher Education, 80(4), 389-414.

Heilig, J. V., Reddick, R. J., Hamilton, C., & Dietz, L. (2010). Actuating Equity: Historical and Contemporary Analyses of African American Access to Selective Higher Education from Sweatt to the Top 10 Percent Law. Harvard Journal of African American Public Policy, 1711-27.

Kisker, C. B., & Oulcalt, C. L. (2005). Community College Honors and Developmental Faculty: Characteristics, Practices, and Implications for Access and Educational Equity. Community College Review, 33(2), 1-21.

Leach, L. (2013). Participation and equity in higher education: are we going back to the future?. Oxford Review of Education, 39(2), 267-286.

Perna, L., Gerald, D., Baum, E., & Milem, J. (2007). The status of equity for black faculty and administrators in public higher education in the south. Research In Higher Education, 48(2), 193-228. doi:10.1007/s11162-006-9041-4

Willems, J., & Bossu, C. (2012). Equity considerations for open educational resources in the globalization of education. Distance Education, 33(2), 185-199.

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