External Factors (class differences)
1a) Cultural Deprivation
-Intellectual Development: development of thinking and reasoning skills. Theorists would argue that many WC homes lack educational books, toys and activities that would help stimulate a child’s intellectual development. Douglas- WC pupils scored lower on test of ability, as their parents are less likely to support their children’s intellectual development. Bernstein and Young- mothers choose toys that influence intellectual development. Criticism: WC may not be able to afford these toys etc. -Language: children fail to develop necessary language skills and grow up incapable of abstract thinking and unable to use language to explain, describe, enquire and compare. Restricted & Elaborated code; Bernstein. MC have an advantage as the elaborated code is used by teachers, text books and exams. Also MC pupils are already fluent speakers (socialisation) so they ‘feel at home’ in school and are more likely to succeed. Criticism: Bernstein describes WC speech inadequate. -Attitudes and Values: Parents attitudes and values are a key factor affecting educational achievement. Douglas- WC parents place less value on education. Feinstein- the lack of interest is more important than financial hardship or factors within school. Many WC subcultures have different goals, beliefs, attitudes and values from the rest of society. Hyman- WC subculture is a self-imposed barrier to educational success. Sugerman- Fatalism, Collectivism, Immediate Gratification, Present-time Orientation. WC children internalise the beliefs and values of their subculture through the socialisation process meaning under-achievement. -Compensatory Education: Policy designed to tackle the problem of CD by providing extra resources to school and communities in deprived areas. E.g. Sure Start, Education Action Zones etc. Criticism: Don’t see the real cause of under-achievement (poverty and material deprivation). -Criticisms: Keddie; CD is a myth and blames victims. A child cannot be deprived of their own culture they are just culturally different. Troyna and Williams; teachers have a ‘speech hierarchy’ where MC speech is highest. Blackstone and Mortimore; parents attend fewer parent evenings as they may work longer hours/less regular hours or put off by school’s MC atmosphere. Also may not help their children’s progress as they lack the knowledge. -Studies show that WC children are more likely to leave school from the age of 16 and are less likely to go on to sixth form and university. Also working-class children are more likely to start school unable to read, and are more likely to fall behind in reading, writing and number skills.
1b) Material Deprivation
-Referred to poverty and lack of material necessities (housing/income). -Stats; 32% of WC students were considering moving out of the family home to attend university. 90% of failing schools are in deprived areas. 33% of those receiving free school meals got 5 or more A*-C GCSE grades. 90% of ‘failing’ schools are located in deprived areas. -Housing- overcrowded housing means less space to do work, play, sleep etc, and greater risk of accidents. -Diet and health- lower intakes of energy, vitamins and minerals. Poor nutrition -> weaker immune system -> lowering children’s energy levels -> get ill easier (poor attendance at school). WC children are more likely to have behavioural or emotional problems. -Financial Support- WC children lack equipment and miss out on school trips. They also make do with hand-me-downs (results in being stigmatised/bullied). Children living in poverty take on jobs (baby sitting, cleaning, paper rounds) which has a negative impact on their school work. Also very few go on to university. The government has tried to tackle this problem, e.g. EMA, raising the school leaving age and providing free-school meals. -Criticisms: Ignores internal factors and cultural deprivation.
1c) Cultural Capital
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