Why are Philadelphia Schools So Bad?

Parents from any socio-economic background want their children to succeed in their lives. A good school and environment with attentive parenting are crucial for children’s education. 

In Philadelphia, most students lack the resources to achieve their goals in school settings. Corruption, poverty, and drug addiction hampered the socio-economic environment, affecting their students’ education and well-being.

Schools are reviewed according to the students’ results reports. Better neighborhoods have better schools with well-trained teachers and resources for students. More than 60% of city students are attending low-performing schools. They mainly come from economically disadvantaged families who have bad influences on their school performances. 

Suburban schools are considered better than city public schools for their performances.

Philadelphia has residential segregation areas like many other old cities of the US, where students from a specific racial group act as the majority in classrooms. These students face some problems related to majority-minority issues from their peers, teachers, and school committees. Though people frequently talk against racism and negligence, in reality, people are biased. 

Affluent neighborhoods’ schools got more money for school spending from property and school taxes with other donations than their poor counterparts. So, the quality of education differs with the educational environment.

Environment dramatically affects students’ school performances, like inattentive behaviors in classrooms and other school activities. If students come from families with drug problems, their attitudes toward learning can be troubled. It is necessary to have proper guidance with effective education to succeed in school tests. 

Proper guidance should come from both families and school systems. Drug addicted and economically disadvantaged families are mostly unable to provide quality time and resources to their children for their betterment. Lack of spending good quality time with students and families’ economic issues affect their overall progress. 

Children learn from their surroundings, not only from schools. Proper planning and budgeting are necessary to operate a school system and a family. As school systems are huge compared to families, the spending is also enormous.

Inadequate School Budget:

The Philadelphia School district faces low-budget issues sometimes. The school budget is sometimes so low that some low-performing schools get closed eventually. Many poor students have dropped out in this situation. Educational resources are sometimes so small that teachers have to spend money from their own pockets to fulfill their students’ learning experiences. Sometimes school employees get layoffs due to inadequate school budgets.

Some school buildings are so old that they are considered toxic, unusable, and unsafe for students’ health. Those school buildings are contaminated with mold, lead paints, loose asbestos, cockroaches, and rat infestation. Most of the schools’ drinkable water tested positive for high lead contamination. Rooms’ floors are damaged, roofs are falling apart, and paints from their sealing drop to the dusty floors. 

Many students and teachers are suffering from asthma and allergic issues. People are at risk of having cancer and other serious diseases. Sometimes schools get backlashes from conscious parents and other guardians. 

City Mismanagement:

Parents, students, teachers, and people from the school committees have questioned the past actions of their governor related to the school problems. 

Under pressure, the Philadelphia governor has visited various schools concerning those hazardous environmental issues and provided 12 million dollars to improve the situation in the last two years. Still, the schools need billions of dollars to fix all the problems. It’s impossible to collect that large sum of money from property taxes. 

Most of the Philadelphia city residents are economically disadvantaged, and for this reason, the city cannot collect enough revenue to support its needs. Crimes and drug activities are so high in this city that most businesses are closed; only a handful of small businesses are hardly alive here. 

Many houses, stores, and other properties are broken, violated, abandoned, and occupied by drug addicts and homeless people. Residents are unable to pay their monthly mortgages for their homes. Renters can’t pay their monthly bills timely and keep holding the place longer without payments. Moreover, most of the time, the renters damage properties when they leave. 

The poverty level is so high that people sometimes set fire to their properties to collect insurance money. For these reasons, the property value goes down, and no one wants to buy those houses, invest in local businesses, or move from other cities. As stores and other businesses are closed due to drug and criminal activities, people cannot earn enough for their daily living. 

Unsafe Environment:

The police departments are always busy controlling the situations. There is no safe place where children can play outside of their homes. People are scared to be outside every day as drug addicts and homeless people are seen on the streets and sidewalks. Sometimes people die on roads from drug overdoses. 

Many parents and other family members are drug-addicted and have mental health problems. Students need parental guidance for improving school performance, but many caregivers don’t care about their children’s cognitive growth and school performance. Students from those backgrounds always have environmental impacts on them and their year-end results.

The problems related to the education system are less essential topics to discuss in the city hall. The situation is like a colossal thunderstorm devastating an area where people are unable to figure out the place from where to start the clean-up process. 

No one takes responsibility for fixing the issues to improve the quality of education. There is no other way as students, teachers, and parents have to deal with it as it flows. 

Most of the students in Philadelphia rely on disorganized and dysfunctional schools for their regular education, food, safety, and accommodations. More than 80% of Philadelphia students get their breakfast and lunch in their schools, and it’s a must for them. They lose their safe place if a school gets closed because of monetary issues.

Drug addiction, violence, and economic crisis affect their precious childhoods. In many different parts of Philadelphia city, drug activities are present in broad daylight, like the daily events at Kensington Avenue. The situation is so bad that the police can’t even stop it. It has adverse effects on school children from different age groups. School dropout is a common problem at junior and high school levels. 


It is unacceptable that students’ educational outcomes, mental- physical health, and precious futures are at risk. Today’s students are a nation’s future. If their mental and physical growth with educational achievements is at risk, the nation’s future is also considered at risk. For a better future, students need a good educational environment and good nurturing habits from parents and teachers with drug-free school zones. These are the reasons why Philadelphia schools are so bad.