Third World Education: Quality and Equality

Third World Education: Quality and Equality

Third World Education: Quality and Equality

Third World Education: Quality and Equality

Synopsis

This work debunks the argument that quality in education can only be achieved by limiting, or trading off, equality. The quality of schooling is a major issue for Third World nations across the globe.

Excerpt

Everyone has a right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available, and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.

—UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS (1948), ADOPTED BY THE UNITED NATIONS, ARTICLE 26

Starkly evident in this, and the following, chapters are some of the tensions of attempts to provide quality education for all—especially in a context of expanding populations and of heightened levels of aspiration, and at a time of significant global change and uncertainty—political, economic, and cultural.

The chapters in this volume are by specialists drawn from many parts of the world, and address issues of quality and equality in diverse settings: the Middle East, Africa, Latin America, the West Indies, Asia, and the Pacific Rim. For China watchers, the rewards are particularly rich: Price uses the “mirror of China” to examine relations of hierarchy and democracy in Chinese society and education, Epstein analyses questions of class and inequality in Chinese education, and Orton sets her analysis within the context of a theory of mutual intercultural relations, based, inter alia, on the work of Johann Galtung. Arnove’s insightful analysis of Nicaraguan education examines tensions between quality and quantity, within the context of both the educational revolution introduced by the leftist Sandinistas (FSLN), and the succeeding, more conservative

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