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    The relevance of certain educational theories in schools

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    How are they relevant to understanding school achievement or achievement within your work setting? What are the critiques? How do Nieto and Bode suggest incorporating these theories?


    Deficit Theory:
    This theory was popular in the 1960s and stated that genetic inferiority and cultural deprivation were the cause of low academic achievement of children of color or living in poverty. It is more likely that schools' perception of students' language, culture, and class as being inadequate and negative fuel the devaluation of these children and lead to their school failure. The suggestion is that since the schools cannot change the living conditions of the children they need to find way to effectively teach the children despite their poverity or other disabling conditions.

    Econonic and Social Reproduction:
    This theroy from the 1970s follows the belief that schools were to keep the students in their place. In other words, teach the poor children how to become good workers and proper attitudes that support their place in society and at the same time teach the children of the dominate classes how to become business managers and how to control those of the lower classes. Basically, education is imposed from above. This theory fails to explain how and why desegregation, bilingual education, multicultural education, and education for children with special needs have been successful. These theories also fail to take cultural and psychological issues into account.

    Cultural Incompatibilities Theory:
    This theory holds that there are cultural clashes between home and school that produce school failure. If the values and expectations differ greatly between home and school, then failure will result. If the values and expectations between home and school are similar, then it is likely there will be success in school. This theory also fails to explain why some students succeed and others fail.

    Cultural-Ecological Theory:
    This theory states that it takes cultures a generation or two before they can succeed in school. This theory does not work simply because many ethnic groups, African Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans and others have been here for many generations yet they are still having difficulty in school.

    Resistance Theory:
    This theory states that simply not learning what the schools teach can be viewed as a form of political resistance. Some view not learning as their refusal to be molded by a hosile society and see this as a positive and healthy solution.

    All-in-all, teachers need to be aware of the different cultures that wil be a part of their schools. It is important to be culturally aware so that different issues can be delt with and that preconceived opinions about a student's ability are not allowed to interfere with that child's education.

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    Solution Preview

    Deficit Theory: In some schools this theory may be relevant if the student lacks ample resources at home or comes from an abusive environment. Critique: It is not necessarily fair or reasonable to blame students for problems that are beyonf their control when these students may lack the proper help allowing them to do well in school.

    Economic and Social Reproduction Theory: It may be relevant in certain schools if certain students are limited to certain classes. For example some students who are considered "poor" may be offered mechanics classes while other students of the "dominate" class may be offered classes that teach them business management. Critique: There may be underlying reasons as to why some children perform poorly in school (if they are ...

    Solution Summary

    The following solution discusses certain educational theories and their relevance to the understanding of school achievement within various educational settings. It also gives criticisms made of these theories and it includes a discussion of how educational philosopher Nieto and Bode would incorporate these theories.