One of the most toxic and unspoken ways in which children and teens are shamed or bullied or simply made anxious has to do with social class. Talking about privilege or economic struggle could—and perhaps should–start at home, but parents often don’t have the tools with which to explain our country’s vast inequalities and the ways they may impact school culture. Education is supposed to be the great equalizer but teachers don’t always have a framework for open discussions either. Meanwhile, some public school districts “lunch shame” students whose parents can’t manage to pay the fee.” with “Basic things such as lunch, book fairs, extracurricular activities and field trips already begin tow widen the class divide as early as kindergarten. How do we as either teachers or parents walk the line between
truth-telling and enlightening our kids and shielding them from the difficulties of the world?