Teaching about socio-economic inequalities to try to reduce them

Theme 1   The economic inequality.

Secondary school seachers.

This presentation will focus on the teaching of economic and social sciences in French high schools. First, it will briefly review the evolution of the curriculum in order to show that the issue of socio-economic inequalities has been greatly reduced in favour of an essentializing approach to markets as conceived by neoclassical theory. This will then be an opportunity to discuss with the participants whether they feel that similar developments are taking place in their own country.

Secondly, by recalling that teachers retain a margin of autonomy in relation to the programmes, we will show how it is still possible to reorganise the latter in order to deal more strongly with the question of socio-economic inequalities in order to show their cumulative and systemic character, as the former programmes of the discipline proposed to do. Some examples of activities will then be presented to the participants, insisting on the interest that these activities can have in the training of pupils in citizenship, but also pointing out, based on feedback, that such learning requires time, insofar as it provokes a certain amount of resistance on the part of the pupils, either because the observations brought to light come up against the vision of the world that they have acquired in the course of their previous socialisation, or because they seem to question some of the 'privileges' they may enjoy because of their gender, ethnicity or social origin and thus their 'merits', or conversely because they may feel that the inequalities highlighted, particularly in terms of access to education, employment or other social goods, are verdicts that call into question their aspirations, when they belong to disadvantaged groups.

This moment is both a plea for the treatment of inequalities in the classroom, for their interest both in terms of epistemological questioning (it forces one to ask what inequalities are in relation to simple differences, how they relate to each other, which ones are the most damaging, etc.), but also in terms of citizenship, insofar as highlighting these inequalities appears to be a necessary prerequisite for the public debate in which students are led to fully participate in a democratic society.

This will be an opportunity to exchange with the participants in order to collect their opinions on the proposed activities as well as testimonies on their own experiences in dealing with the issue of inequalities with their own students.

Presented by: Igor Maertinache (1, 1) and BenoƮt Guyon

Interactive presentation

Downloadable files: 59_5473_Presentation AEEE 2021_APSES.pdf

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