Ciência & Educação (Bauru)
Print version ISSN 1516-7313
REZENDE, Flávia and OSTERMANN, Fernanda. Science olympiads: a practice in question. Ciênc. educ. (Bauru) [online]. 2012, vol.18, n.1, pp. 245-256. ISSN 1516-7313. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-73132012000100015.
In this work we question the scholarly olympiads as one of the government policies that, at a first glance, intend to improve the teaching in public schools and, with more emphasis, the olympiads in natural science, a historically excluded knowledge field. Based on the historical-cultural perspective of learning, we argue against competitiveness and for cooperation and democracy in the educational processes. From an analysis of scholar inequality directed by the sociology of education, our position is against unfair competition among students pre-selected by their cultural background. We argue that interaction, collaboration and democracy are relevant values both from cognitive or humanist points of view. We conclude with the need to invest in policies that do not serve only as a stopgap to the still precarious conditions of the Brazilian public schools but to promote other values which can produce changes in the unequal society that we live in.
Keywords : Science teaching; School Olympiad; Educational policy; Competitivity.