Latin American Education: Comparative Perspectives

Latin American Education: Comparative Perspectives

Latin American Education: Comparative Perspectives

Latin American Education: Comparative Perspectives

Synopsis

This book offers a relevant sample of the current research on Latin American education in comparative perspective. In their introduction, Carlos Alberto Torres & Adriana Puiggros, two of the most recognized researchers of Latin American education, draw from political sociology of education, theories of the state, history of education, & deconstructionist theories to focus on changes in state formation in the region & its implications for the constitution of the pedagogical subject in public schools. Throughout the different chapters, the contributors present & analyze the most relevant topics, research agendas, & some of the key theoretical & political problems of Latin American education.

Excerpt

Past efforts and available resources have made possible basic education for all children, helped to extend the years of schooling, provided early and preschool education, facilitated the access of disabled children to education, and improved the chances of the poor, migrants, girls, and indigenous children to attend public schools in Latin America. In addition to improving the equality of educational opportunities, schools have improved their overall capacity to retain students and even to promote them to higher education. However, equality, quality (including effectiveness, equity and efficiency) and relevance of educational provision in the region continue to be critical issues especially now that Latin American states are financially pressed. Elementary and secondary schooling in the region continue to be segregated by class, with the poor attending public schools and middle and upper classes attending private institutions. With few exceptions preschooling, decisive in shaping the cognitive structure of children, is not widely available for the children of the poor in the region. Illiteracy continues to plague educational planners, with the gender gap to the disadvantage of women ever widening. Illiteracy and the educational condition of the rural populations, particularly those of indigenous origin, continue to be pressing issues, with adult education remaining at the top of the agenda for policy making. Popular education, an indigenous paradigm of nonformal education developed in the region, is facing serious challenges in the context of post-modernism and post-Marxism in Latin America. Teachers' training, their political views and technical skills, continue to be central for educational reform in the region. Tatto and Velez's chapter documents a process of reform in teacher education that shows the complexities of teacher . . .

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