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Week 8: Racialization and Education.doc

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Child and Youth Studies
Course Code
Rebecca Raby

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Original Lecture = “Cambria” Tuesday, March 4, 2014. Added on notes = “Arial Narrow” Lecture 8:  Racialization and Education Outline I/ Schooling II/ Defining race, culture and ethnicity III/  Making race, culture and ethnicity IV/  Discrimination and education V/ A different kind of classroom? Main points • Schools both challenge, and contribute to, inequality  • Culture, ethnicity and race are distinct and shifting terms • Young people’s lives are shaped by culture, ethnicity and race, sometimes with difficult consequences,  including dealing with inequality and racism in schools • Various approaches challenge the school’s reproduction of inequalities I/ Schooling A) Schools and equality • Skill development and credentials • Encountering diversity • Schools are frequently vital when talking about children’s development • School can be great when students encounter diversity • They allow students to engage with other students who are different from them B) Socialization and society • Reproducing culture • Hidden curriculum • Dominant norms • Central to reproducing culture o Example: everyone in elementary school listening to the national anthem everyday • Through schools that we pass on key values of cultures • Overt and covert curriculum • Doing the things that need to be done in order to be successful • Reinforce hierarchies, competitive individualism • But also very valuable = learning new skills that are needed C)  Schools and inequality 1. Social reproduction theory (linked to critical theory):  Bowles and Gintis (1976) Schooling in Capitalist  America  • Via preparing students for certain kinds of work… • E.g. Barman, Jean “Schooled for Inequality:  The Education of British Columbia Aboriginal  Children”  • E.g. Streaming oCertain academic/applied streams oSchool systems sort children by their academic abilities oAcademic streams are favoured because they prepare individuals for university whereas applied prepares those for college (biased) Tuesday, March 4, 2014. oUSA vs. Finland • E.g.: military recruiting in US inner city schools oTend to recruit more working class people oLow income and often largely racialized schools • And related sorting procedures • E.g.:  Jenny Oakes (1985) Keeping Track:  How Schools Structure Inequality  oFunding and expectations are not present when looking at special education school systems • E.g.:  Angela Valenzuela. (2009) “Subtractive schooling, caring relations, and social capital in  the schooling of U.S.­Mexican youth” oSchools who do well on standardized tests receive better and more funding than those who do not do well oA great example of how schools reproduce inequality • We live in a hierarchical society where some benefit more than others • The article addresses how schools were underfunded and preparing these young people for certain kinds of work (gendered manual labour) • School are used to reproduce certain people at different class levels 2. Unequal resources  (see Schissel) • Inequality and underfunding:  o Fees and fundraising (“People for Education”) o Intensifying inequality o Many schools require fees and they are slipped in many ways (field trips, extra-curricular activities, etc.) 3. Rewarding of cultural capital • Cultural capital revisited  • School’s values are whose values? • For some an easier fit • For some a harder fit • It looks not only at money and how schools might stream, but how schools may or may not be able to serve and foreground the skills and backgrounds of the students that come • Tied to the idea as habitus (we all come from a certain background, we have certain values, tastes, etc.) • Whatever part of culture is really valued in a setting is culture capital II/ Defining race, culture and ethnicity • Culture:  The "set of distinctive spiritual, material, intellectual and emotional features of society or a  social group… it encompasses, in addition to art and literature, lifestyles, ways of living together, value  systems, traditions and beliefs" (UNESCO 2002)  • Ethnicity:  More specifically defining a group of people based on shared cultural features that are often  linked with language, traditions, religion, history and nationality. • Race:  Defining a group of people based on physical characteristics that are deemed to be social 
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