Intro: What is a “Schooled Society”
-Canada is a school society, by this we mean the formal education has moved to the centre stage of
social life. Modern nation increasingly reply on the education system to rationalize and justify the social
-More jobs and career paths now require educational certification, educational attainment is becoming
a stronger predictor of ppl’s income and employment success.
-Social Mobility: Groups formerly excluded from positions of power, such as women and some racial
minorities, are now encouraged to use schooling as a lever of upward mobility and social justice. “great
-Canadian schools are now the institution that embodies core values of equity, progress, and technical
sophistication, values and associated practices that are intrinsic to modern society.
-Schooling plays a pivotal role in nation-building and citizenship, influencing what it means to be a
citizen and whether we strongly cherish that identity.
-post secondary education become more tightly connected to labour markets, more businesses
encourage their employees to seek educational training.
-Many expect schools to tackle an incredible variety of social ills, ranging from drug use to racism to
violence (more social problems are seen to have educational solutions)
Thinking Sociologically about Schooling
-many sociologists believe that too closely mimicking the natural sciences to study the social world can
be wrong-headed because human society differs from the rest of nature in fundamental ways
-Social science differs from natural science by recognizing the fundamental fact of human agency, the
unique ability to make meaning, to choose and to behave intentionally. A key realization to this
appreciation is that social behavior is often regular, stable and predictable
-The key insight of social scientists is that social forces have probabilistic, not deterministic, effects on
-The regularity of human social life is not naturally determined, human arrangements vary immensely,
sometimes due to ppl’s personal choices, or due to cultural traditions (playboy vs. monk). Even though
biological instincts may play a role in our recurring social practices, social arrangements are, to use
contemporary parlance, “social constructions”.
-social construction: beyond noting the limited force of human biology in social affairs, another
implication of the term is that complex behavior and institutions cannot be reduced to an individual’s
intentions and meaning either. Etc. foolish to attribute the rise of modern school systems to individual
motivations or to any psychological trait.
-social structure: structure=solidity, permanence. Social=conveys interaction and meaning. Tgt the
words highlight a social construction that has some elasticity (is subject to change and transformation),
yet also has some solidity and impact. It’s generated by human conduct, not natural forces. Enduring
ensembles of interconnected rules and resources. Etc school and schooling.
-schooled society: Today’s educational systems are huge bureaucracies that are governed by a variety