I grew up in Florence, South Carolina, where I attended a Title 1 elementary, middle and high school, which means the schools were filled with low-income students. Florence is in what locals call “the corridor of shame,” a region of rural, under-resourced school districts along I-95 that are burdened by poverty and poorly performing schools, many of which are Title 1. As I grew up in this area, I noticed the poverty but never fully understood it. Outside of school, I would interact with more affluent kids but we never spoke about the chasm in the way our schools differed. It was when I got involved with the career and technology education program in my school district that I noticed the disparities in the education system.
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