Assess the role of education in society, in particular the link between education, social mobility, life chances, employment, race and gender Free essay! Download now
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Assess the role of education in society, in particular the link between education, social mobility, life chances, employment, race and gender
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| Words: 1868 | Submitted: 11-Jun-2011
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Descriptionthe role of education in society and the theories that are involved.
Assess the role of education in society, in particular the link between education, social mobility, life chances, employment, race and gender.
The role of education in society is mainly seen to provide a child with a curriculum and hidden curriculum; teaching them skills to mentally and socially prepare them for the outside world of employment. There are two views which are Functionalists and Marxists, who both take different opinions on the role of education. Marxists theorise that education is an unfair and corrupt system and Functionalists see education as a key role for a childs future in employment.
Functionalists believe that education is essential for society, in order to help the economy thrive with educated workers. The theory is that whilst children are in school, the ‘above average’ students will be shifted away from the ‘under achievers’, this making it easier to push the ‘clever’ students towards rising up in society and to help the economy by taking on middle to upper class jobs. Then the ‘under achievers’ will be noticed by their ‘hierarchy’ and be pushed towards vocational education and eventually manual labouring jobs, this in itself will help with the economy’s public sector also helping the economy thrive. This functionalist theory proves to itself that there needs to be some sort of system so that society can function together, otherwise society would fall apart. Functionalists also believe that we should live in a meritocratic society, where those who work hard will ascend in society and those that decide not to further their education will not benefit from the privileges that society has to offer them.
‘Education is the influence exercised by adult generations on those that are not yet ready for social life. Its object is to develop in the child a certain number of physical , intellectual and moral states which are demanded of him by both the political society as a whole and the special milieu for which he is specifically destined.’ (Durkheim)
Emile Durkheim had a functionalist view on Education; he felt that school was a place to learn morals and to socialise. He thought that children needed to be taught these skills in school and not at home, in order for them to achieve an understanding that it will be necessary to have these skills in future times and to make it clear to them that they will become a part of society’s system. Otherwise the system would not work without these major factors.
The problem with the functionalists’ theory on education is that a pupil could do well in their education and receive all A’s, but this does not prove that they have done well in learning how to survive in society unless they ...
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