Every society has to prepare its young people for a place in adult life and teach them societal values through a process called education.
Education is an important agent of socialization and encourages social integration, especially in countries with diverse populations, such as the United States. Through their schools, students from a variety of cultural backgrounds come into contact with mainstream culture.
The vast majority of the children in the United States attend public schools, but these schools are far from equal. Public schools located in affluent, predominantly white, suburban areas tend to have more modern facilities and smaller class sizes than schools in urban, less affluent areas, which means that economic status often determines the quality of education a student receives. Children whose parents are wealthy enough to send them to private school enjoy an even greater advantage. Studies show that graduates of private schools are more likely to finish college and get high-salary jobs than are graduates of public schools.