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Cadernos de Pesquisa

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Abstract

TIRAMONTI, Guillermina. Secondary education in Argentina: selection and differentiation dynamics. Cad. Pesqui. [online]. 2011, vol.41, n.144, pp. 692-709. ISSN 0100-1574.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-15742011000300003.

This article analyzes the national educational system's selection dynamics - especially on the secondary education - and the influence of our own cultural configuration in the definition of these mechanisms. The cultural characteristics identified as promoters of the selection dynamic are, on one hand, the egalitarian myth and, on the other, the exacerbated individualism. The equalitarian pretension has displaced merit verification from the basis of differentiation, and has replaced it for a segregated incorporation of population to formally equal institutions, as well as for the development of a deregulated promoting system inside institutions based on student's individual resources and capacity of making use of them for guarantying themselves successful educational trajectories. This technology of selection works on public secondary schools as well as on traditional public universities. In this open competition, the middle class sectors are the ones achieving goals through the educational system, by leaving behind the lower social sectors which have difficulties to bring their resources into play on a school ruled by middle class standards.

Keywords : secondary education; Argentina; educational inequalities; public school.

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