Failure of inclusion in the Argentine educational system, the causes and how can this trend be reversed? -Brand

The report ¨Reading and inequality. Comparisons between Argentina and Latin America – the Observatory of Argentines for Education showed that in Argentina inclusion in the educational system is a mere illusion, since 61.5% of students from the low socioeconomic sector in 3rd grade primary school do not have the basic level of reading, while the same level is observed in 26.3% of their colleagues from the high socioeconomic sector. Before such a challenging scenario, it is worth asking ourselves. How is it possible that Argentina, a historical unicorn of all educational systems in the Spanish-speaking world, became a country with the greatest deficiencies in basic reading in the popular sectors, despite the equality and inclusion policies of progressive governments ? Is the failure cultural or institutional?

It can be seen that the challenge of the educational system in which Argentina finds itself is cultural. According to the cultural dimension “Long-term orientation” by Dutch psychologist Geert Hofstede, it is located on the lowest scale, which implies that Argentines consecrate traditions and look with distrust in the future. However, the data provided by the TCPS Applied Research Institute show a paradox that Argentina presents similar scores in the dimensions of “Achievement Orientation” (between 43 and 53), and “Uncertainty Control” (86-94 points). ), than France or Belgium, countries that are characterized by the inclusion and diversity of their educational systems. The scores of the dimension “Achievement Orientation” indicate that in these three countries excessive competitiveness is not well evaluated, education is based on equality and harmony of others. The two French-speaking countries share with Argentina the dimension “Uncertainty control”, which involves the development of laws that allow the organization of citizens’ lives, in order to prevent the stress of uncertainty. In focus with other cultures, in France, 24% of the active population has a disability. France has the law “No 2005-102”, in which alternatives are proposed to incorporate people with disabilities into daily life via education.

From the perspective of Geert Hofstede’s dimensions of national culture, the Power Distance Index is defined as the degree to which the least powerful members of organizations and institutions accept and expect power to be distributed unequally. ¨ confirms Miguel Gurrola, Founder of ¨Conscious Performance¨ and researcher at TCPS Institute. The findings of Dr. Bond’s Values ​​Survey among students from 23 countries (Hofstede, G., Hofstede, GJ, & Minkov, M. (2010). Cultures and organizations: Software of the mind, third edition (3rd ed. McGraw-Hill Professional) show that students from countries with high power distance scores considered it especially important to: 1. have few desires, 2. moderation, follow the middle path, and 3. remain selfless and pure. In unequal societies, common people, such as students, thought they should not aspire beyond their rank. These were his conclusions about the study of him in this type of culture. On the other hand, students from countries with low scores in power distance considered especially important: 1. adaptability and 2. caution or care. These observations indicate that in more egalitarian societies, where problems cannot be solved by someone in power, students saw the importance of being flexible to reach an agreement. Argentina in the “Power Distance” dimension has 49 points, exactly in the middle, which means that as a country we have average adaptability and at the same time we remain half disinterested. Could it be the problem?

“Where there is a need, a right is born,” said Eva Perón, which became a national motto of Argentina. Although Argentina has had governments that proposed laws that followed this motto, already rooted in its culture, inequality in access to education is reflected in the data from the report – Reading and inequality. Comparisons between Argentina and Latin America.¨

Consequently, can we say that the challenge of including people from the poorest sectors and people with disabilities is only cultural, institutional, or is it a conjunction of the two? According to experts, it can be seen that this is a hybrid of the two. ¨In the country, the educational crisis has been a consequence of many political decisions where other aspects of society prevailed, where today we observe the high rate of reading and text comprehension problems at different levels of the educational system. This is what the latest evaluations indicate”, motivates a teacher in an off-the-record conversation. Furthermore, it is noted that the modality of special education has been facing this aspect to generate a diversity of supports, strategies and pedagogical proposals that can face the challenge of literacy that are accompanied from initial level school to secondary school, as in France and Belgium. Miguel Gurrola concludes, if we take into consideration the findings of Dr. Bond’s survey, “I consider it vital to work comprehensively on a revitalization and updating of teaching content and methods in Latin America, especially in Argentina. This includes teacher training that includes deep knowledge and development of intercultural skills to better take advantage of the strengths of Argentine culture, and at the same time develop their flexibility and adaptability to respond to the economic, political and social challenges of a world that It is totally interconnected as a consequence of technological advances.¨

Argentina has an institutional challenge that comes from the cultural aspect. If the dimension “Long-term orientation” is put into context, it is noted that governments approve laws that satisfy the needs of collective society, but at the same time they are short-term and not very adaptable. This aspect can be confirmed with the observation of an anonymous teacher, that the educational system generates spaces for analysis, reflections and reformulations that invite education professionals to leave the comfort zone to look for different forms and contexts in which Literacy can occur and it is possible that students can expand their reading abilities. On the other hand, education specialists affirm that there are educational proposals like in France and Belgium, that here “there are current regulations, training on new forms of literacy, perhaps it would be necessary for a larger teaching population to return to the origin of the “why of teaching¨ understanding that the profile of students has changed so as not to return to the past to give rise to educational institutions to reformulate their “why” without forgetting that subjects must be trained so that in the medium and/or long term future they occupy places in this new society.¨ In summary, there is a possibility of reversing the negative trend and creating more egalitarian accessibility in the educational system by focusing on the cultural advantages that Argentina shares with France and Belgium, while changing short-termism to long-termism so that More students can have the same educational opportunities as their counterparts from wealthier sectors.


Pedro Vodquevich

Founder and Labor Advisor

TCPS Institute Expert:

Whatsapp: +34657135836,

Whatsapp: +54 9 11 2565 8006


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