23 SES 13 B, Patterns of School Segregation in Europe and the US
Socio-economic school segregation in Spain and school segregation of migrant students, in particular, have grown in the last decades. The speed of the increase and a lack of sufficient policy planning has caused a rapid growth in between-school segregation of students of migrant origin and has also provoked an increase in the social stratification of schools. The type of quasi market regime in education in Spain, with a large presence of publicly subsidized private schools, polarized this process even more. Economic and cultural discriminatory barriers to access private schools and insufficient public funding contributed to the unbalanced distribution of disadvantaged students between both sectors. Like in other Southern European countries, residential segregation of ethnic groups in Spain is not especially high (Arbaci, 2008; Dominguez et al., 2010), despite recent analyses show an increasing trend due to economic crisis (Nel·lo & Donat, 2014). However, low levels of residential segregation may coexist with social residential marginalisation, which occurs irrespective of higher or lower levels of ethnic concentration. However, the level of educational inclusion is relatively low and the school segregation is notably high in urban contexts. Several reasons explain the distance between a potentially equitable system of school admissions and a real segregated one. Aspects such as the definition of school catchment areas (Villamor & Prieto, 2016), absence of priorities of admission for low income students (Bonal 2012), de facto school fees in private subsidized schools (Calero, 2007), or processes of “white flight” of local population (Elias & Daza, 2017) have all contributed to increase school segregation in urban settings. Despite available instruments to regulate local education market dynamics, policy makers at the national, regional and local levels have done little to compensate for inequalities in the distribution of ethnic minority students or students from low income families. These policy absences must be considered key factors to understand the characteristics of inequalities in the Spanish education system. This paper reviews how all the mentioned factors impact on processes of school segregation in Spain since the beginning of the 2000s and focuses specifically on those policy instruments that have been used to mitigate or (unintentionally) increase the dynamics of school segregation. Building on available evidence, the paper examines policy measures and policy absences that explain different dynamics of between-school segregation of migrant students.
Arbaci, S. (2008). (Re)Viewing Ethnic Residential Segregation in Southern European Cities: Housing and Urban Regimes as Mechanisms of Marginalisation. Housing Studies, 23:4, 589-613. Bonal, X. (2012b). Education policy and school segregation in Catalonia: the politics of non-decision making. Journal of Education Policy, vol. 27 (3), 401-421. Calero, J. (2007). An Assessment of Educational Equity and Policy in Spain. In Teese, R., Lamb, S. and Duru-Bellat, M. (eds.) Education and Equity: International Studies in Educational Inequality, Theory and Policy, vol. 2. Inequality in Education Systems. Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer, 444-459. Elias, M. and Daza, L. (2017). ¿Cómo deciden los jóvenes la transición a la educación postobligatoria? Diferencias entre centros públicos y privados-concertados. Revista de la Asociación de Sociología de la Educación, 10 (1), 5-22. Nel·lo, O. and Donat, C. (2014). Los efectos territoriales de la crisis en la región metropolitana de Barcelona. In: Albertos, J.M and Sánchez, J.L. (ed.). Geografía de la crisis económica en España, 565-608. València: Universitat de València. Villamor, P. and Prieto, M. (2016). Reformas hacia la privatización de la educación en la Comunidad de Madrid. Revista de la Asociación de Sociología de la Educación, 9 (2), 265-276.
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