Ethnic Differences in Achievement

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  • Ethnic differences in achievement
    • External factors
      • Cultural deprivation
        • Attitudes and values
          • Lack of motivation from black parents are a major cause of failure for black children
          • Many black children are socialised into anti-school sub-cultures meaning they are fatalist (Sugarman)
        • Intellectual and linguistic skills
          • Is a major cause of under-achievement
          • Bereiter and Engelmann found that the language spoken by low-income black families are inadequate for educational success
          • Yet, the Swann report found that language was not a major factor is success and Gillborn also found that Indian students, who spoke other languages still did well
        • Family structure
          • There are mostly dysfunctional  family structures as many black families do not have the breadwinner as the father left at a young age, so the family is headed by lone mother
          • The New Right feel that without a male role model children will under-achieve and they may not inbrace mainstream British culture and so will under-achieve
          • Pryce found that family structure was a major contributor fr under achievement for black-Caribbean families and are less resistant to racism so have low self-esteem
            • In contrast, Asian families are more resistant so have more self-esteem and achieve better
      • Material deprivation and class
        • Pakistanis and Bangladeshi are over three times more likely than whites to be in the poorest fifth of the population
        • Class differences between whites and Indian's against Bangladeshi and Pakistanis mean that P and B usually do worse
        • Gillborn argues that social class factors do not override the influence of ethnicity because if you compare pupils in the same social class but of different race means there will be inequalities
      • Racism in the wider society
        • Mason found that there is still discrimination from British citizens on ethnic minority groups
        • Noon did an experiment where he sent an application with the same qualifications and information but the only change was the names with one saying "Evans" and the other saying "Patel" they were more "encouraging" with the white application
    • Internal factors
      • Labelling and teacher racism
        • Gillborn and Youdell argue that teachers were quicker to discipline black pupils than others for the same behaviour, this is because of "racialised expectations"
        • Black pupils are stereotyped as those who misbehave
        • Teachers under-estimate Asian pupils and talk simplistic and down to them
        • The miispronounced of pupils names meant that they felt isolated and mocked
      • Pupil responses and sub-cultures
        • Fuller and Mac
          • black girls put their anger about racist teachers into their educational achievement and didn't limit who they were friends with, they had black friends from all sets of the school
          • But didn't seek the approval of teachers because they disliked them
        • Mirza
          • Black girls couldn't have successful coping strategies and so failed
          • Teachers put down students and didn't support them in the pursuit of ambitions
          • The colour blind teacher: teachers who believe in all pupils are equal but let racism go unchallenged
          • The liberal chauvinist teacher: teachers who believe black pupils are culturally deprived and so have low expectations of them
          • The overt racist teachers: see black students as inferiour
      • the ethnocentric curriculum
        • History cirriculum teaches of a magical British empire that conquered all
        • Schools concentrate on mainly Christian holidays ignoring ones such as Eid, for the Muslims
        • Images of black slaves undermine black pupils self-esteem


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