Ethnic differences in achievement: a summary

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  • Internal factors
    • Ethnic differences in achievement
      • External factors
        • Cultural deprivation
          • Bereiter and Engelmann: the language spoken by low-income black Americans is inadequate for educational success. It is disjointed, ungrammatical and uncapable of expressing abstract ideas
          • Daniel Moynihan (1965): many black families are headed by a lone mother so their children are deprived of adequate care because she struggles financially. It also means a lack of a male role model. Cultural deprivation is therefore a cycle
            • Charles Murray (1984): a high rate of lone parenthood and a lack of positive male role models lead to the underachievement of some minorities
              • Tony Sewell (2009): it is not the lack of a male role model that leads to black boys underachieving but a lack of fatherly nurturing
                • Chris Arnot (2004): street gangs present fatherless boys with a media-inspired role model of anti-school black masculinity
          • Ken Pryce (1979): Asians are higher achievers than black Caribbean pupils because their culture is more resistant to racism and gives them a greater sense of self-worth. The difference exists because of the different effects of colonialism on the two groups
          • Ruth Lupton (2004): adult authority in Asian families is similar to the model that operates in schools
          • Andrew McCulloch's (2014) survey of 16 000 pupils found that ethnic minority pupils were more likely to aspire to go to university than white British pupils
          • Geoffery Driver (1977): CD theory ignores the positive effects of ethnicity on achievement
            • Errol Lawrence (1982): black pupils underachieve not because of low self-esteem, but racism
              • Keddie: CD theory is a victim-blaming explanation
                • Two main alternatives: multicultural education and anti-racist education
        • Material deprivation and class
          • Guy Palmer (2012): ethnic minorities are more likely to suffer from material deprivation
            • Almost half of children of colour live in low-income households, as against a quarter of white children
            • People of colour are almost 2x as likely to be unemployed compared to whites
            • Households of colour are around 3x as likely to be homeless
            • Almost half of Bangladeshi and Pakistani workers earn under £7 per hour, compared with only a quarter of white British workers
          • Why are EMs at greater risk of material deprivation?
            • Many live in economically depressed areas w/ high unemployment and low wage rates
            • Cultural factors such as the tradition of purdah in Muslim households, prevent women from working outside the home
            • Racial discrimination in the labour market and housing market
            • A lack of language skills, and foreign qualifications not being recognised by UK employers
            • Asylum seekers may not be allowed to take paid work
        • Racism in wider society
          • David Mason (2001): 'discrimination is a continuing and persistent feature of the experience of Britain's citizens of minority ethnic origin'
    • Evidence for internal factors being more of an influence
      • Steve Strand (2010): analysed the entire national cohort of over 530 000 7-11 y/o and found black Caribbean boys not entitled to FSMs made significantly less progress than whites
      • Gillborn and Mirza (2000): on entry to primary school black children were 20 points above the local average, but by the time it came to GCSEs they were 21 points below
    • Labelling and teacher racism
      • Jenny Bourne (1994) found: schools tend to see black boys as a threat and to label them negatively, leading to exclusion. Only 1/5 excluded pupils achieves 5 GCSEs
      • Osler (2001): blacks appear more likely to suffer from unrecorded unofficial exclusions and internal exclusions. Also more likely to be placed in PRUs
      • Peter Foster (1990) found: teachers' stereotypes of blacks as badly behaved could result in them being placed in lower sets
      • Cecile Wright (1992) found: teachers hold ethnocentric views which affect how they relate to Asian pupils
    • Pupil responses and subcultures
      • Rejecting negative labels
        • Mary Fuller's (1984) study of a group of black girls in year 11 of a London comp. school
        • Martin Mac an Ghaill's (1992) study of black and Asian A-level students at a 6th form college
      • Failed strategies for avoiding racism
        • Heidi Safia Mirza (1992) identifies 3 types of teacher racism: the colour-blind, the liberal chauvinists, and the overt racists
          • (Unsucsessful) strategies employed by the girls to avoid this were: being selective about which staff to ask for help and getting on w/ their own work and not taking part in class discussions
      • The variety of boys' responses
        • Sewell identifies 4 responses: the rebels (most visible and influential), the conformists (largest), the retreatists (tiny minority), and the innovators (second largest)
  • In 2011, 86% of Chinese girls who received FSMs achieved 5 or more higher grade GCSEs, compared with only 65% of white girls who were NOT receiving FSMs
    • Does class override ethnicity?
      • Tariq Modood (2004) found: children from low-income families generally do less well, but the effects of low income were much less for people of colour than for white pupils
      • Material deprivation and class
        • Guy Palmer (2012): ethnic minorities are more likely to suffer from material deprivation
          • Almost half of children of colour live in low-income households, as against a quarter of white children
          • People of colour are almost 2x as likely to be unemployed compared to whites
          • Households of colour are around 3x as likely to be homeless
          • Almost half of Bangladeshi and Pakistani workers earn under £7 per hour, compared with only a quarter of white British workers
        • Why are EMs at greater risk of material deprivation?
          • Many live in economically depressed areas w/ high unemployment and low wage rates
          • Cultural factors such as the tradition of purdah in Muslim households, prevent women from working outside the home
          • Racial discrimination in the labour market and housing market
          • A lack of language skills, and foreign qualifications not being recognised by UK employers
          • Asylum seekers may not be allowed to take paid work
  • John Rex (1996): racial discrimination leads to social exclusion and this worsens poverty faced by EMs.
    • Wood et al (2010) sent 3 closely matched job applications to each of almost 1 000 vacancies. Only 1 in 16 'EM' applications were offered an interview, as against 1 in 9 'white' applications
    • Racism in wider society
      • David Mason (2001): 'discrimination is a continuing and persistent feature of the experience of Britain's citizens of minority ethnic origin'
  • Gillborn and Youdell (2000) found: teachers were quicker to discipline black pupils
    • Labelling and teacher racism
      • Jenny Bourne (1994) found: schools tend to see black boys as a threat and to label them negatively, leading to exclusion. Only 1/5 excluded pupils achieves 5 GCSEs
      • Osler (2001): blacks appear more likely to suffer from unrecorded unofficial exclusions and internal exclusions. Also more likely to be placed in PRUs
      • Peter Foster (1990) found: teachers' stereotypes of blacks as badly behaved could result in them being placed in lower sets
      • Cecile Wright (1992) found: teachers hold ethnocentric views which affect how they relate to Asian pupils
    • Argue that this is the result of teachers' 'racialised expectations'
  • Louise Archer (2008): teachers' dominant discourse defines EM pupils' identities as lacking the favoured identity of the pupil
    • This constructs 3 different pupil identities: the ideal pupil identity, the pathologised pupil identity, and the demonised pupil identity
      • In a further (2010) study, Archer found teachers to stereotype Asian girls as quiet, passive or docile
        • Farzana Shain (2003): when Asian girls challenge this stereotype by misbehaving, they are often dealt with more severely
    • Pupil identities
      • Internal factors
        • Ethnic differences in achievement
          • External factors
            • Cultural deprivation
              • Bereiter and Engelmann: the language spoken by low-income black Americans is inadequate for educational success. It is disjointed, ungrammatical and uncapable of expressing abstract ideas
              • Daniel Moynihan (1965): many black families are headed by a lone mother so their children are deprived of adequate care because she struggles financially. It also means a lack of a male role model. Cultural deprivation is therefore a cycle
                • Charles Murray (1984): a high rate of lone parenthood and a lack of positive male role models lead to the underachievement of some minorities
                  • Tony Sewell (2009): it is not the lack of a male role model that leads to black boys underachieving but a lack of fatherly nurturing
                    • Chris Arnot (2004): street gangs present fatherless boys with a media-inspired role model of anti-school black masculinity
              • Ken Pryce (1979): Asians are higher achievers than black Caribbean pupils because their culture is more resistant to racism and gives them a greater sense of self-worth. The difference exists because of the different effects of colonialism on the two groups
              • Ruth Lupton (2004): adult authority in Asian families is similar to the model that operates in schools
              • Andrew McCulloch's (2014) survey of 16 000 pupils found that ethnic minority pupils were more likely to aspire to go to university than white British pupils
              • Geoffery Driver (1977): CD theory ignores the positive effects of ethnicity on achievement
                • Errol Lawrence (1982): black pupils underachieve not because of low self-esteem, but racism
                  • Keddie: CD theory is a victim-blaming explanation
                    • Two main alternatives: multicultural education and anti-racist education
        • Evidence for internal factors being more of an influence
          • Steve Strand (2010): analysed the entire national cohort of over 530 000 7-11 y/o and found black Caribbean boys not entitled to FSMs made significantly less progress than whites
          • Gillborn and Mirza (2000): on entry to primary school black children were 20 points above the local average, but by the time it came to GCSEs they were 21 points below
        • Pupil responses and subcultures
          • Rejecting negative labels
            • Mary Fuller's (1984) study of a group of black girls in year 11 of a London comp. school
            • Martin Mac an Ghaill's (1992) study of black and Asian A-level students at a 6th form college
          • Failed strategies for avoiding racism
            • Heidi Safia Mirza (1992) identifies 3 types of teacher racism: the colour-blind, the liberal chauvinists, and the overt racists
              • (Unsucsessful) strategies employed by the girls to avoid this were: being selective about which staff to ask for help and getting on w/ their own work and not taking part in class discussions
          • The variety of boys' responses
            • Sewell identifies 4 responses: the rebels (most visible and influential), the conformists (largest), the retreatists (tiny minority), and the innovators (second largest)
      • Archer and Francis (2007): teachers' view of Chinese pupils is a 'negative positive stereotype'
        • Archer: even the successes of EM (and female) pupils will only be seen as 'over achievement' - since 'proper' achievement is seen to be the natural preserve of the privileged, white M/C ideal pupil

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