How had economics impacted Permain and Odessa High schools? (160)
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The problems with the education system are really a microcosm of the mentality of a strictly oil based economy. Odessa is a product of oil boom and bust economics; in the late 1980’s the economy was mostly a bust. The failure of the economy predictably leads to failures in family structure, education, and community stability. Bissinger often alludes to the surreal importance that the community puts on high school football. All the stresses of life in a tough economy are placed squarely on the shoulders of a group of teenage boys and a coach whose job depends on success. Football becomes a very odd partner with food stamps, divorce, and social marginalization. The rush of attending a game on Friday night is a temporary elixir for the town’s socio-economic woes. After their final year of football, most of these boys are spit back into Odessa’s depressed economy. They enter an unforgiving world with a few memories of football glory and a mediocre education. Permian also shared this dynamic but not to the same extent. Permian's economy was not as dependent on oil. Even in low economic times Permian found the money for high school football.