Nobody likes getting tickets. For many people they’re merely an annoyance, but for people struggling to make ends meet, they can be a serious burden. And since many states levy additional monthly fees when people can’t pay off fines in their entirety, some people get stuck in a cycle of debt that’s extremely difficult to escape.
In this lesson students use linear equations and solve linear systems to examine what happens when people are unable to pay small municipal fines. They also discuss what can happen to the most financially vulnerable citizens when cities rely heavily on fines for revenue.