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fucntionalist veiw

functionalists see the positives functions of education:                                                                         4 poitive functions:                                                                                                                          . --  Creating social solidarity                                                                                                            - Teaching skills necessary for work                                                                                           -  Teaching us core values                                                                                                            -  Role Allocation and meritocracy

- Durkheim argued that ‘school is a society in miniature.’ preparing us for life in wider society. social solidarity

Durkheim noted that an advanced industrial economy required a massive and complex Division of Labour. At school, individuals learn the diverse skills necessary for this to take place.

parsons argued that education acts as the ‘focal socializing agency’ in modern society. School plays the central role in the process of secondary socialisation, taking over from primary socialisation.

 -  davis and moore: role allocation,schools select and allocate pupils to their future work roles.inequality is necessary to ensure the most talented fill important roles.

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functionalist veiw: evaluation

+ the new right- agree schools are meritocratic and socialise individuals

-  meritocracy, evidence suggests that equal opppertunities in education doesnt exist

-  role allocation, Tumin critisises Davis and Moore for putting forward a circular argument 

-  role allocation, are the most talented always the most rewarded with important jobs?

-  socialisation, marxists believe that education only transmits the ideology of capitalism and               recreates inequality.

-  preperation for work, the new right argue eductaion is not performing its functions correctly.

-  interactionalists, Wrong (1961) argue that pipils are not passive puppets or sponges soaking in schools norms and values.

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marxist veiw

capitalism= an economic and political system in which a countrys trade is controlled by private owners for profit.

- eductaion reproduces class inequality

- legitimates class inequality 

- works only in the interest of capitalist employers

Althusser argues the edcuation system is part of the ideological state apparatus, it maintains the rule of the bourgeoise by controlling poeples ideas values and beliefs. IN TWO WAYS:

- class inequality by transmitting it from one generation to the next 

- legitimates class inequality by teachng pupils capitalist values 

HIDDEN CURRICULUM: the things u learn at school informally, Bowles and Gintis argue this prepeares pupils for the workplace.

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marxist veiw cont.

Bowles and Gintis 

schooling in capitalist america

- capitalismt need obedient workers that are willing to work hard with low pay and follow orders.

- they belive educations role is to create these obedient workerd, students are rewarded for having these traits.

correspondence principle:idea that school mirrors the workplace in capitalist societies.

E.g. heirarchy, alienation, extrinsic satisfaction, competition, following rules, having deadlines

myth of meritocracy: dont have equal oppertunities, high income and class linked to educational achievement. myth of metitocracy helps justify priveledges of higher class and helps persuade w/c to accept the inequality so theyre less likley to overthrow capitalism. creates false class consciousness.

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marxist veiw cont. 2

Willis: learning to labour

- 12 w/c lads 

-  interveiws and observation, try to understand why w/c kids get w/c jobs

- boys formed a counter culture, oppsoed school. willis noted the similarities between the anti school subculture and shop floor culture of manual workers.

- ladsa saw themselves as superior to staff, no interest in academic qualifications, aiijmed to do little work, identified as adults, formed counter culture(sexist and racist), values w/c masculinity, values physcial manual labour 

- he argues counter culture prepares students for unskilled jobs (physical manual labour)

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marxism: evaluation


- useful to demonstrate myth of meritocracy.

- ( willis) still relevent today, counter school subcultures stillle exist


- (willis) only 12, not representitive, only studies boys, non information about girls.

- other sociologits argue that willis romantisises the boys and makes them seem like w/c hrous despite their racise, sexist anti socil behaviour willis's study is potentially outdated, factory jobs not common anymore.

- marxists focus too much on capitalism and class inequality thry ignore gender inequalities, femenists argue that school transmits patriarchy.

- economically deterministic- blames capitalism for everything. functionalists say they ignore positives of education.

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feminist veiw

- femenists think it transmitts patriarchal values

Liberal feminists think that ther has been an improvement 

Radical feminists argue that the education system is still fundamentally patriarchal and continues to marginalise and oppress women.

Differnence feminism points out how not all girls expeiriences are the same, everyone will expieience something differerent, e.g a muslim girl compared to a non muslim.

Marxist feminists argue that capitalism oppresses women.

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feminist veiw cont.

pupils gender and sexual identity

1= double standards Lees (1995) sexual double standards reinforce traditional veiws about men and womens sexual behaviour (agent of social control)

2= vrbal abuse 'rich vocab of abuse' reinforces gender and sexual identity ( slags and drags) Paetcher- name calling helps maintain male power 

3= male gaze, Mac and Ghall argue its a fro of surveillance, objectifies girls and and proves heterosexual masculinity.

4= male peer groups, verbal abuse used to reinforce masculinity, willis's study. Mac and Ghall (1994) study of schol found ' macho lads' reffered to hard woking boys as ' **** head achievers' 

5= disipline, Mac and Ghall found teachers told boys of for 'acting like girls'. techers ignore verbal abuse towards girls or blame them for incenting it.

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feminist veiw: evaluation

-Other sociologists argue its boys that suffer from sexism and this is why they achieve lower grades 

- Femenistation of education system

- Outdated, schools are trying to eradicate sexism within school

- Only look at differences in gender and not other factors such as class or ethnicity.

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The New Right veiw

-agree with functionalists: some people are more naturally talented than others, like a system based on meritocracy, believe the dcuation system should socialise pupils into shared values to create a national identity e.g introduction of fundimental british values to the curriculum

-disagree with fuctionalists: they belive the system is failing to achieve its goals (meritocracy, socialisation, specialist skills) 

- the new right argue state educuation prvides the 'one size fit all' education system, employers and consumers (you and your parents have no say)

- the new right also want to create a market in education. MARKETISATION. would like to offer more choice and create more competition between schools.

Chubb and Moe: consumer choice reseached based in the usa and found:

- some groups were disadvantaged 

- state education fails to give pupils skills for work 

- private education delivers better education than state bc they are answerable to paying customers.

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The New Right: evaluation

+ marketisation, david argues that marketisation creates a parentocracy, gives parents power

marketisatio, Gerwitz and Ball argue that competition between schools only benefits the middle class ( have money and power to get their kids to the best school.

- state failure, marxists argue the cause of law educational standards is actually social inequality 

- shared culture, marxists argue that it does not create shared culture but instead shared capitalist values.

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Class differences- external factors

material deprivation - poverty, lack of necessities such as adequate diet, housing, clothing,or money.

Jan Flaherty: money problems in the family are a significant factor in younger childrens non-attendance to school.

Exclusion + truency more likley with children from poorer backgrounds, excluded pu[ils are less likley to return to main tream education.


-can directly and indirectly affect achievement

-overcrowding, harder to work, shared rooms- disturbed sleep (douglas)

- impact health, damp- resoiratory issues, get il, low attendace to school= bad grades

-temporary accomodation, more psycholohical distress, infections and accidents

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Class differences- external factors cont.

diet and health

Marilyn howard- young people from poorer homes have lower intake of energy, vitimins and minerals. poor nutrition = bad health, weaker immune system- absence from school or difficulty concentrating in school.

More likely to have emotional or behavioural issue, Richard Wilkinson (1996) among 10 year olds the lower the social class the higher the rate oh hyper activity, anxiety and conduct disorders all of which have negative effects on edcuation.

Jo Blanden + Stehen Machin (2007)- children from low income households more likely to engage in 'externaliding' behaviour such as fighting and having temper tantrums which disrupt schooling.

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Class differences- external factors cont.

financial support and costs of education

- poor families lack equiptment

- David Bull (1980)- refers to the 'cost of free schooling'.  according to Flaherty, fear of stigmatisation may also help explain why 20% elidgeble for free school meals dont take it. 

Teresa Smith and Michael Noble: poverty acts as a barrier to learning i other ways such as not having money for private schooling or tuition and poorer quality of local school.

Educational Maintainance Allowance (EMA) abolished in England by the coalition gov in 2011

Ridge (2002)- bullying lowers self asteem and makes students feel as if they dont fit in, leading them to not want to tske psrt in school and decrease their educational achievement.

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Class differences- external factors cont.

Fear of debt

- uni=debt

- may deter w/c from goin to university 

- Claire callander and Jun Jackson- w/c see debbt as negative and as something to avoid

- more likley to apply local so they can live at home and save money, save costs from travel or accomodation

-also more likey to work part time 

- drop out is more commmon within the w/c 

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material deprivation- evaluation

+ researchers including mortimore and whitley agree that material deprivation has a greater effect on achievement than in school

+ Robin argues tackling child poverty is the most effective way to boose w/c educational achievement 

- Feinstein, disagrees and argues that parents lack of interest is the mostb important factor 

- ignores internal factors

- policies have been put  in place to help deal with this issue e.g pupil premium

- some children from poor families still achieve, therefore poverty may not be the main cause for eduacational achievement differences.

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Cultural deprivation

cultural deprivation= not having the norms and values needed to achieve 

-w/c families dont socialise children properly so tey clakc the cultural equiptment for school. 3 main aspects:

- intellectual development, language, attitudes and values

intellectual develeopment: w/c lack educational resources to stimulate the child e.g books.                Douglas found w/c children scored lower in tests of ability, parents less likely to support their education and help at home by reading or other activities at home.

Bernstein and Young  reached a similair conclusion, found that m/c mothers were  more likeley to chooose toys that encourage thinnking and reasoning skills.

EVALUATION: classist- generalisation, may not be about choice- material deprivation not cultural.                          not due to a lack of interest in their childs education but time.

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Cultural deprivation


-Bereiter and Engelamann- claimes that the language used by lower class is deficent and are at a disadvantage due to it.

Bernstein- 2 lang codes: restricted and elaborated 

elaborated gives m/c an advantage as they can communicate better to the teachers and overall a better way of communication.


generalisation of all m/c and w/c, also assumes all teachers are m/c

- does this limit achievlemt in al subjects ?

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Cultural deprivation

Attitudes and values

Douglas- w/c parents place less value to educational achievement, less ambisious and gave less encouragement, lack of motivation for child.

Feinstein- parents lack of interest is more important than finacial hardship or internal factors

Sugarman- 4 key values:

- fatalism- what will be will be

- collectivism- value group membership more thna individual achievement

- immediate gratification- recieve rewards staright away

- present time orientation- present is more important than future

> argues there are consequences of the lack of stability and promotion prospects in w/c jobs and are passed on through primary socialisation

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Cultural deprivation: evaluation

+ draws attention to the role of childrens backgrounds

- keddie argues cultural deprivaton is a myth and sees it as victim blaming. w/c children are not deprived of culture, theri culture is just different but faces prejedices.

- Troyna and williams argue w/c language is not the issue but the schools have a negative veiw towards it.

- blackstone and mortimore argue that w/c are less interested in their childs education but  may not be ableto attend parents evenings at all due to things such as work hours.

- compensatory education may disguise real problems (inequality)

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cultural capital

Bourdieu (1984)- both cultural and material factors contribute to achievement.

3 types of capital: - cultural                                                                                                                                               - material                                                                                                                                               - educational

cultural capital: refers to the knowledge, attitudes, values, language, tastes and ability of the middle class. it benefits the m/c as they are more likley to develop these intelectual interests and understanding of what the education system requires for success.

educational and economic capital: m/c children with cultural capital are better equipt for demands of school. welathier parents can change their economic capital into educational capital by sending kids to private school or paying for extra tuition. Dennis Leech and Eric Campos study of coventry, m/c parents more likley to affort housing in catchment area of good schools.

A test of bourdieu's ideas: Alice Sullivan- questionaires and surveys on 465 pupils, 4 schools. she found that those who read complec fiction or watched tv documentarieshad wider vocab and greater cultural knowledge. grester cultural capital > graduates   and more likley succeed at GCSE.

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cultural capital: evaluation

- its a huge generalisation, working class students can still have cultural capital and achieve.

- also generalises teachers as they are all different, not all are middle class with high cultural capital

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internal factors- labelling

teacher labelling= attatch a negative or positive defenition ot them. often based on stereotypes 

Becker interveiwed 60 high school teachers and found they judged pupils on how closeley they fitted the image of the 'ideal pupil'. work, conduct and appearance were all factors influencing. teachers saw m/c childrenas closest to the ideal.

rist= kindergarden american, 3 tables, tigers, clows and cardinals

Dunne and Gazeley- schools produce w/c underachievers due to labelingand teachers assumptions. interveiws, normalised underachievemnt of w/c. seemed unconcerned about it.             impact= extention work for m/c and easier exams for w/c.

Elliot- blue eyes brown eyes                                                                                                                 she split children into eye colour groups and told one that they were above the other in every way.the children changed there behaviour, became rude to one another and also achievemnt changed. minset of students changes according to the labels. learning speeds also impacted.

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internal- self fulfilling prophecy

self fulfilling prophecy- is when a label is internalised and they become the label. usually negative but can be positive. positive = halo effect

Rosenthal- pygmalian effect                                                                                                                  - told teachers some students wer elate bloomers                                                                               - teachers treated them different, they performed differently                                                                4 factors:                                                                                                                                               - climate factor, warmer climate, kinder and friendlier                                                                          - input factor, more information given to them                                                                                      - response oppertunity, chances to answer more questions                                                                - feedback factors, prasied more poitivley, more feedback given when they are wrong.

50% of the late bloomers had a very big improvement.

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streaming= splitting pupils into several different heirarchal groups which would stay togther for all lessons.

Setting= putting pupils of similar ability togther for certain lesson.

streaming and self fulfilling prophecy

- becker shows teachers have low expectations of w/c student, as a results they are often in lower streams. 

- its difficult to move streams so they are stuck with the low expectations, feel like 'no hopers'

- they belive the label and live up to it. Douglas found that children in lower streams at age 8 sufferered a decline in IQ by 11.

- m/c tend to benefit from streaming as they are more likely to be veiwed as the ideal pupil and be placed in high streams. Douglas found children in higher streams at 8 improves IQ by 11.

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Educational triage- gilborn and youdell

- found ability is used to stream pupils. w/c and black students often in low streams, less likley to have ability.

- low streams denies them access to the knowledge and oppertunities needed to gain good grades, widens class gap.

- schools need good league table positionsto attract students and funding (marketisation)

- this A-C ecoonomy means teachers focus on students that have potential.

- Gilborn and Youdell call this educational triage: sorting pupils into tjose who will pass, those with potential and those with no hope. no hopers left in bottom stream and can lead to SFP.

critisisms: - outdated, schools no longer focus on C-D studensts                                                                        - league tables now show achievment rather than attainment 

Ball: beach side comprehensive, observed- found that w/c students more likley bottom set.

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internal- pupil subcultures

lacey (1970)

Differentiation= when teachers catagorise students on ability                                                        polarisation= pupils respond to differntiation by moving to one or the other                                      pro school= placed in higher streams, mainly m/c,gain status rom academic success                    anti school= lower streams, loss of self asteem, forced to find alternative means of status, creates further issues.

critisism: only 2 groups, there are people inbetween too.

Woods                                                                                                                                                   argues there are other responces to labellingand streaming.                                                               - integration, teachers pet                                                                                                                     - ritualism, doing whatever to stay out of trouble                                                                                 - retreatism, day dreaming and messing around                                                                                 - rebellion, rejecting all the school rules

Furlong suggests that students move between these responses, different lessons and differnt teachers.

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evaluation of interactionalism

+ considers internal factors and impact of interaction in school

- deterministic- assumes labelling always leads to SFP

- blames teachers for labelling but doeant explain why this happens

- marxist would argue that labelling theorists fail to examine impact of education ina capitalist system

- generalisation of teavchers behaviour 

- ignores the importance of external factors

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internal cont.

habitus= taken for granted ways of thinking of a particular social class

m/c has power to define there habitus as superior and impose it on the edcuation system.

symbolic capital and symbolic violence- school has m/c habitus, students socialised into m/c gained symbolic capital. Bourdieu calls withholding of this symbolic violence

- Is a clash between w/c and m/c habitus, w/c may experience alienation at school

NIKE IDENTITIES:                                                                                                                                - many pupils find other ways to gain status and self worth                                                                  - they do so by constructing meaningful class identities themselves through branded items              - peers reward them for style, but it goes against school dress codes                                                 - pupilsinvestment in the style causes marginaliseation 

evaluation:                                                                                                           --- generalistaion of teachers and students

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ethnic differences- external

cultural deprivation 

Langauge:                                                                                                                                     - Bereiter and Engelmann veiwed the language spoken by low income black families as inadequate for educational achievement. 

- however otheres stated this is not a major factor, Mirza noted indian ststudents do well despite the langauge barrier.

Attitude:                                                                                                               - lack of motivation is often a key factor  for many black children, as some black children are scialised into fatalistic attitiudes.

- however, Keddie argues this is victim blaming and should blame the system                                                                                                          

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ethnic differences- external cont.

Family structure (black)

- Moynihan argued that many black families are headed by a lone mother. The absense of a father figure means boys lack role models of male achaivement. this creates a cycle of inadequate parenting.

this is supported by Charles Murray who argeues high rate of lone paenting leads to underachievement for minorities. (New Right thinker)

however, Driver argues that being a single parent family helps girls and provides them with strong independent role models 

Sewell argues it is not the lack of father figure but the parenting style of black parents that is a negative impact on black boys.

- Keddie, victim blaming

- however Gillborn argues that it is institutional racism that produces failure of large amounts of black boys.

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ethnic differences- external cont.

Family structure (Asian)

- Driver and Ballard argued asian parents have more positive attitudes to education and higher aspirations for their childres future,as result are more supportive.

however this doesnt explain why pakistani students do poorly, and dont perform as welll as others.

- Khan argues that these families are actually stress ridden and put pressure on children to always achieve highly rather than being genuinley supportive.

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ethnic differences- material deprivation

Palmer found that:                                                                                                          almost half of all ethnic minority children live in low income households against 1/4 of whites                                                                                                              ethinic minorities 2x more likley to be unemployed                                                ethnic minorities 3x more likley to be homeless                                                      ehtnic minorities more likley to do shift work 


+ does seem to be a corrolation between poverty and acheivement

-  even though indian and chinese students are materically deprives they are still some of the highest acheivers. this shows that class does not completely override ethnicity.                                                                     

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ethnic differences- racism in society

 - some argue poverty is a product of discrimination (maoson)

Rex- shows racial discrimination leads to social exclusion.

Woods et al- sent 3 closeley matched job applicaions to 1000 job vacancies. for each job one appeared to be from white and two from from ethnic minorities.1/16 ehthnic minorities were offered an interveiw compared to 1/9 of white application. 

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ethnic differences- internal- teacher labelling

teacher labelling- interactionalism .Gillborn + mirza- black children were highest achievers in primary school but droppped by GCSE and fell below average.teachers often see black and asian students as bein far from the ideal pupil. black =disruprive and asian= passive

Gillborn and Youdell- argue that this is as a result of 'racialised expectation' .

Bournefound that schools tend to see black boys as a threat and labelled them negativley, leading to exclusion. exclusion affects achievement= only 1/5 achieve 5 GCSE. Oster- black students more likley to be excluded.

- A-C economy, negative stereotypes about black pupils ability and placed in lower sets. Foster, teachers strereotypes about black pupils as being badly behaved could lead to lowe sets and self fulfilling prophecy.

wright- asian students are victims of labelling, took for granted that british culture + standard english superior. affected how they related asain students. teachers assumed they had poor grasp of english- left out of class discussions, used simpler english to speak tp them.

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ethnic differences- internal- pupil identities

Archer- teachers dominant discource defines ethnic minority pupil identities as lacking the favoured identity og ideal pupil.

Ideal pupil identity= white, middle class, mascualinised identity, normal sexuality. pupil achieves in the 'right way' through natural ability.

The pathological pupil identity= asisn, ' deserving poor' , femenised identity, oppressed sexuality. conformist culture based over achiever, succeed through hard work.

Demonised pupil identity= black or white working class, hyper sexuality, unintelligent, peer-led, culturally deprived under achiever. 

Fuller + Mac + Ghall- rejecting negative labels- study of black girls in year 11 of london comprehensive, high achievers where most black girls were in low streams.

Mirza- studied ambitious black girls that faced teacher racism, teachers dicouraged themfrom being ambitious with the advise and career info they give.

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ethnic differences- internal- pupil identities con

colour blind= beleive pupils are equal but in practice they allo racism to go unchallenged.

the liberal chauvinist= teachers that believe black pupils are culturally deprived and have low expactations.

the overt racist= teachers who believe blacks are inferior and acctually discriminate against them.

Sewell- response to identities (on boys)                                                                                               - the rebel- rejects school, goals, rules                                                                                                - conformist- biggest group, keen to succed                                                                                        - retreatist- tiny minority, disconnects from school and the subculture                                                  - innavators- second largest, pro education, anti school

evaluation:                                                                                                                                             + doesnt blame home, looks at teachers stereotypes/veiws                                                                 -  ignores input of racism in wider society                                                                                             - makes generalisations about teachers and ignores there may be ethnic minority teachers             -  not fair to assumeall students labelled will accpt the label.

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ethnic differences- internal- institutional racism

Gillborn argues the assessment game is rigged so as to validate the dominant cultures superiority, if black students start to improve they change the rules to create failure.

- the gifted and talented programme= aim to meet needs of more able students. while it helped minority backgrounds, gillborn points out whites 2x more likley to be identified as gifted and talented.

- exam teirs: tikly et al- found that in 30 school in 'aiming high' initiative to raise black carribean pupils achievement, blacks entered to lower teirs than whites. 

the new 'IQism' - access to oppertunities like higher sets depends on teacher assessments of ability. this works against black students as gillborn notes teachers put blacks in low groups.

critisism of gillborn:he focuses too much on these 2 points                                                           - underachivement of some EM groups such as black boys                                                          - over achievement of indian and chinese                           

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gender- external

Norman- canalisation leads to different interests.

Murphy and Elwood-role of reading- types of book

gender gap- girls do better than boys and are also more likeley to sit and pass at higher grades than boys 

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gender- external- femenist movements

- changes encourages by femenism- girls self image + ambitions with family and career.

- Angela McRobbie- girls magazines- before they used to emphasise marriage, now they contain images of independant women.

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gender- external- changes in family

major changes since 1970:

increased divorce rate 

- increased cohabitiation + decreases in first marriages

- increase in lone parent families

- smaller families 

These all changes girls attitudes towards education. more female headed families means more female breadwinners. 

They act as a role model for the girls and make them want to grow us to be independant 

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gender- external- changes in womens employment

- 1970 equal pay act = make it illegal to pay women less for doing equal work value

- 1975 sex discrimination act = outlaws discrimination at work

- since 1975 the pay gap has halved from 30% to 15%

The changes allow females to see the job oppertunities instead of being housewives.

Girls feel like they have a better chance to get good jobs so they try in education.

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gender- external- girls ambitions

Sue Sharpe= interveiws with girls in the 1970s and 1990s shows a major chnage in their ambitions, and the way they see their own futures.

in 1974 = girls had low ambitions anf thought of educational and finachal success as unfemenine

in 1990s = ambitions changes and priorities were now on getting a good career for money.

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gender- internal- equal oppertunity policy

- equal oppertunities is now part of mainstream thinking.

- policies such as GIST ( girls into science and technology) and WISE ( women into science and engeneering) encourage girls to do these subjects.

- introdruction of the national curriculum

- boaler argues that these policies have removed barriers for girls

- although this is an internal factor it was only able to occur due to femenism (external)

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gender- internal- role models

- increased female teachers and head teachers, act as positive role models for girls in school making them ttry harder to achieve and do well.

- only 36% of head teachers are female, majority still males

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gender- internal- GCSE coursework

Gorard found the gender gap was constant until coursework was introduced

Mitsos and Brown- found that girls: spend longer and take more care woth coursework than boys. they are also better when it comes to deadlines.

outdated, most subjects dont do coursework anymore, but maybe this is why the gap is closing. 

its a generalisation of all boys and girls 

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gender- internal- teacher attention

French and French-  boys get more attention and repremand (formal disaproval) 

Francais-  boys felt picked on 

girls recieve more positive praise and attentionv(can lead to SFP) 

- deterministic and makes big generalisations

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gender- internal- challenging stereotypes

Weiner- since 1980s teachers ahve been trying to challenge stereotypes

helped present positive images of girls

- radical femenists argue that schools are still patriarchal e.g male gaze, male peer groups, verbal abuse etc.

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gender- internal- selection and league tables

Jackson- girls are attractive to schools because they usually do good in exams

- more girls doing better in exams means that the school gets a higher placement on league tables which gets more students to join

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archer- student identities

Archer- focussed on interactios between working class pupils identity and school and how they produce underachivement.

Archer et al- symbolic capital = refers to status recognition and sense of worththat we obtain from others. they obtain this by adopting hyper heterosexual femenine identity, having a boyfriend, being loud. these create conflict in school.

  • - hyper sexual female- spend time and money constucting the identity
  • - schools punish them for their appearance and breaking rules
  • - boyfriends lowers girls ambitionsand makes them lose interest in uni.
  • - being loud- outspoken, questioning teacg=hers authority, goes against the ideal female student
  • - w/c gilrs are faced with dilema. either gaining symbolic apital from peers, or gaining educational capital by rejecting w/c identity and conforming to schools m/c notions.
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successful w/c girls

- although w/c girls in general underachieve some succeed and go onto higher education. however they can be disadvantaged by their class and gender identities, as Sarah Evans shows in her study of 21 w/c sixthform girls in south london comprehensive school.

-she found that girls wanted to go to uni to increase earning power however not for themselves, but for their future family.

Skeggs= caring is a crucial part of the identity and the girls in evans study wished to remain at home + contribute to families.

economic necessity- reason to live at home, limits uni choices

- living at home is part of w/c identity- Archer shows a preference for local is a key feature of w/c habitus

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Boys and achievement- literacy

DCSF (department for children, schools and family) argue this was the main reason for gender gap in educational achivement. 

-girls grow up reading more books and developing their literacy skills, this gives them an advantage when they go to school compared to boys.

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Boys and achievement- mens jobs

- Mitsos and Browne

- globalisation means many jobs boys would go into are now carried out in contries where companies can pay thier workforce lower wages.

- engeneering, ship building, iron + steel industries 

- this has led to boys ahving less drive to achieve 


the jobs were not very motivating to begin with

- its a generalisation not all boys would have wanted to work these jobs

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Boys and achievement- femenisation

- Sewell argues education has become femenised     e.g female traits are an advantage in the classroom (sit quietly, pay attention, coursework)


generalisation of boys and girls traits

- radical femenists say the eduycation system is not femenised but infact patriarchal

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Boys and achievement- femenisation

- Sewell argues education has become femenised     e.g female traits are an advantage in the classroom (sit quietly, pay attention, coursework)


generalisation of boys and girls traits

- radical femenists say the eduycation system is not femenised but infact patriarchal

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Boys and achievement- shortage of male teachers

- only 14% of primary school teachers are males

- makes boys percieve education as something for girls

- female teachers are less able to disapline boys

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Boys and achievement- laddish subcultures

- Epstein found boys are likley to be harrased and labelled as 'sissies' or ' swots' if they appear to try hard.

- Francais argues this is becoming increasingly widespread.


- girls could experience this toon so its a generalisation

- deterministic, they could overcome the labels and still succeed

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policy- tripartite

- from 1944 education was influenced by meritocracy 

- 1944 education act brought in the tripartite system ans 11+ exam:

  • - grammer schools (best)
  • - secondary modern
  • - technical schools (worst)

problems with the system:

labelling students 

- no understanding of different ability/ educational needs

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policy- comprehensives

- aim was to overcome the class divide 

-11+ was obolished and replaced with comprehensive schools, these are schools that are open to everyone.

pro= equal oppertunities

con= may not be able to help every student .

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converter= converters are school that had good or outstanding ofsted grades that have opted to convert to an academy status

sponsered= have a sponser such as a buissness,universities or other schools. most but not all were underacheiveing before the sponser and became academies to improve.

academy chain= partnershipbetween a group of academies, they vary in size.

free schools= all ability state funded school, improve education for children

studio schools= academies for 14-19 year olds, backed by employers who help tailor curriculum. to make sure young poeple are equipt with skills for work.

university technical college= type of secondary school led by sponser university close by. supports curriculum, provides proffessional development oppertunities, guide students in industrial apprenteships and degrees

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policy- research

free school meals(2014)= every child in first 3 years of school will be eligible for free school meals. help every child get good start.

pupil premium(2011)= target money for those disadvantages student. try to close the attainment gap.

educational maintainace allowance(2004-2011)=  income assessmen, weekly £30 to help with further educational costs (16-19) 

aim higher(2004-2010)- aimed to increase number of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds apply to  higher education.

sure start(1998)= help and advise, some provided learning and day care/ pre school

t level action plan= 2 year course equivelant to 3 A levels, 16-19, cources and apprenteships, vocational skills

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policy- marketisation and choice

marketisation- schools being run like buissneses                                                                                 - reduced direct state control over education (free school)                                                                   - increased copetition between schools                                                                                               - increased parental choice 

- 1988 education education reform act- 1997 new labour followed similair policies- 2010 coalition took marketisation further ( free schools)

benefits of marketisation: parentocracy                                                                                                - publishing ofsted results, leagure tables, specialised schools increasing parental choice, ore competition increasing quality to attract pupils, allowing parents to set up free schools

disadvantages:                                                                                                                                       - ball- argues its recreating inequality                                                                                                   - bartlett- argued league tables encourage 'cream skimming and sift shifting'                                     - gerwitz, found m/c parents have the tools to make the best choice, e.e money, cultural capital etc

gerwitz- parental choice- skiled choosers, local choosers,  semi skilled ,disconnected 

ball argues parentocracy isa  myth, parents dont have full choice

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coalition policies

- academy school state funded, indirectly funded by department of education and independant of local authority

- between 2010 and 2012 schools encouraged to leave local authority and become academies.

- free schools set up by parents, teachers, faith organisations or buisnesses rather than local authority

- coalition policies that aimed to cut out inequality: free school meals, pupil premium 

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coalition policies

- academy school state funded, indirectly funded by department of education and independant of local authority

- between 2010 and 2012 schools encouraged to leave local authority and become academies.

- free schools set up by parents, teachers, faith organisations or buisnesses rather than local authority

- coalition policies that aimed to cut out inequality: free school meals, pupil premium 

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policy- privatisation

privatistaion= transfer of public assets such as schools to private companies. 

- education becomes a oppertunity for profit, ball calls this education service industry (ESI)

- private companies in the ESI are included in building schools, providing supply teachers, work based learning, career advise 

- large scale school project  often involve public private partnerships (PPPs), typically such contrast last for 25 years or more during time local council pay monthly lease and a management fee out of public funds.

- ball= companies involvedin such work make upto 10x as much profit as they do on other contacts, however local authorities usually have to agree bc its the only way fro a new schoolto be built.

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policy- privatisation

blurring the public/ private boundry

- many senior officailsin public sector, now leave to set up or work for private sectors. these companies then bit for contracts to provide services to other schools+ local auhtorities.

- Allyson Pollack notes,  this allows companies to buy ' insider knowledge' to help win contracts as well as stopping local authorities democracy.

privatisationa and globalisation of education policy

many companies in education services are foreign owned. exam board edexel is owned by us educational publishing and testing grant pearson. according to ball spme pearson gcse exams answers are marked in sydney+lowa. buckingham + scanlan - uks leading uducational software companies are owned by global multinationals.

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policy- privatisation cont.

cola- isation of school

private sector is penetrating education indirectly e.g with vending machines on school grounds. this process is called ' cola-isation' of schools.

- Molnar, schools targeted by private companies becuase 'school by their nature carry enourmous goodwill and can confer legitimacy on anything associated with them.

- Sharon Beder, uk families spent £110,000 in tesco in return for a single computer for school.

education as a comodity

Ball concludes that a fundimental chnage taking place in which privatisation is becoming the key factor shaping educational policy.

- policy uningcreasingly focussed on making services out of public sector to private companies.

- marxist such as Stuart Hall, see coalistion gov policies as part of long march of neoliberal revelution.

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