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Examine the Marxist view that the role of the education system is to reproduce and justify the existing class structure.

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Introduction

Examine the Marxist view that the role of the education system is to reproduce and justify the existing class structure. In this essay I am going to examine the Marxist view that the role of the education system is to reproduce and justify the existing class structure. Marxists see the educational system as a mechanism for maintaining class inequalities, for example the reproduction of the capitalist system. The capitalist system is one where by which the rich (the upper class) receive what is considered to be 'the best'. More often than not, this entails private education which therefore seemingly upholds 'higher' classed jobs for middle/upper class children in the foreseen future. The middle class therefore obtaining the middle classed status jobs and working class the lowest paid/lower status jobs. The Marxist view therefore determines that the role of education is not the pivotal point to determine who obtains what type of job through merit, but concludes that it is indeed their class that determines their job. ...read more.

Middle

The functionalist view on this social class structure however, gives a 'truer picture'. As children from 'working class' families who attend comprehensive schools, can achieve middle/upper class jobs, through staying on at school or going to university or specialised colleges, just like middle class children can do who have attended public or private schools. Marxists could argue however, that some working class children only get to university or specialised colleges via scholarships or special programmes so therefore without them there theories would be valid and consistent but I believe it just shows that the government and education system are recognising that if other working class children can go on to get higher paid and higher status jobs, then a lot more can with there help. Hence meaning that class doesn't necessarily have to determine your lifestyle or job. ...read more.

Conclusion

In conclusion, from a Marxist point of view, schools merely serve to allocate which status job a pupil has from the certain class they are from already. However they believe that the career options a specific pupil can receive is affected by equality of educational opportunity. If you belong in a working class environment you are indeed less likely to be offered or in fact come across as many opportunities as a pupil from an upper class society which inevitably narrows your choices for your field of work. Schooling therefore appears to demoralize the talents of any working class student according to Marxism. If a pupil comes from a working class background teachers and the government will automatically label this student as an automatic failure. In this way the working classes are sifted out of the educational system in the same way as which they go in. The overall result of the role allocation function of schools means that the social class structure is enforced and reproduced repeatedly. ...read more.

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