Math and reading help for children in intergenerational poverty would be 'awesome,' mom says
The 2013 report identified more than 52,400 Utah children ages newborn to 17 who live in intergenerational poverty.
That effort was followed by legislation in 2013 that created a state commission to develop policy recommendations to end intergenerational poverty and dependence on public assistance programs.
SB43 now moves to the Senate for its consideration.
Oller said she would want Brooke to seek additional help because her young daughter's struggles manifest themselves in frequent phone calls from school because she is complaining of a headache or a stomachache.
"She's really worried about it. She's worried she'll have to do first grade again," Oller said.
Oller's son, Shawn, is in the third grade and doing well in school. She also has a 2-year-old son, Landon.
One of Oller's goals is to earn her GED so she can work toward a better job. She and her children are living at the Family Support Center's LifeStart Village, a residential program for mothers and children.
Oller's own mother spent time in prison, and she was raised by the father of her half-sister. Without a high school diploma, she's mostly worked as a cashier and at fast-food restaurants.
She's learned the hard way that to make a living wage, her children not only need to finish high school, they need to go to college.
Some children need a hand up to reach the goal she wants for her children, "not to be dependent on anyone or anything."
Oller said allowing children to struggle in school can have lifelong consequences for them and for taxpayers.
"In the long run, I think it will cost a lot more if you don't do it," she said.
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