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ASSESS THE REASONS WHY IT WAS ASSUMED THAT COMPREHENSIVE SCHOOLS WOULD PARTLY RESERVE SOCIAL CLASS DISADVANTAGES IN SCHOOLING. (20)

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Introduction

ASSESS THE REASONS WHY IT WAS ASSUMED THAT COMPREHENSIVE SCHOOLS WOULD PARTLY RESERVE SOCIAL CLASS DISADVANTAGES IN SCHOOLING. (20) Education is crucial. It takes up a large proportion of people's lives and affects their future. It is also very expensive e.g. in 1992 it cost the government �32.3 million. Education can both be formal and informal. The schooling system that exists today is formal education. Formal education is where specialised institutions are set up and trained professionals, who are paid, are employed to pass on skills and knowledge e.g. schools are built. Another form of schooling also exists, known as formal education. This is when information learnt is usually passed down by family and community members. E.g. farming, the son will learn farming skills from his father and other members. Comprehensive schools focus on the lower class and emphasize on punctuality, obedience and hard work. They emerged to reduce social class disadvantages in schooling. It was therefore, assumed that comprehensive schools would partly reserve social class disadvantages in schooling. ...read more.

Middle

In this way the tripartite system was abolished and the comprehensive schools intended to reduce class differences etc. The comprehensive type of schooling was based on the principle of one type of secondary school for all children from all abilities and all social backgrounds. It provided the same opportunities to obtain qualifications and training. Unlike Grammar Schools the Comprehensive Schools had no entrance exams or fees; also there was no selection at 11 years of age. The 1980 legislation gave parents and pupils more choice of schools, this was favoured by the labour party, however the conservatives preferred different types of education and schools. Even though critics of comprehensive schools thought that these types of schools would lower standards evidence showed that in 1983 standards were in fact higher leading to less than 4% attending Grammar Schools compared to 21% in 1969. It was also thought that comprehensive schools would hold back higher ability children. However a study of 16000 children born in the same week in 1958 showed that high ability children on average made the same amount of progress in reading and maths regardless of the type of school they attended. ...read more.

Conclusion

For the lower class who want to gain high standard of education, going to grammar schools will be too expensive for them. Grammar schools also encourage snobbery and do not teach the national curriculum. Despite these arguments the government have introduced many policies to reduce social and class differences. Foe example, the new labour government published a new policy document entitled 'excellence in schools'. It states that they intend to overcome economic and social disadvantages and to make equality of opportunity a reality. This involved finding new ways of motivating young people in deprived inner city areas and doing something about underachieving schools. Education action zones were introduced and were located in deprived urban areas with low levels of educational attainment. By April 2003 there were 72 EAZs each run by an action form made up of parents,representatives from local schools and businesses and from local and national government. Each zone was given �1 million to spend. Teachers and schools were encouraged to be flexible and innovative, for example, running saturday classes and a variety of work related courses. However, despite all these policies being introduced the weaknesses of comprehensive schools cannot be ignored. ...read more.

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