Racism in schools: Same performance, worse grade

The debate on MeTwo is also directed against teachers. First experiences with racism make many in school, according to the posts. What's the charge?

Racism in schools: Same performance, worse grade
  • Page 1 — same performance, worse grade
  • Page 2 — teachers with prejudices
  • Read on a page

    The first formative experiences with racism make people at school. This impression comes at least when you read reports under hashtag MeTwo that have been going on for a few days. Many tell from ir school days that y were teased because of ir name, that teachers would not have trusted m to make it to a university. That y would have gotten a worse grade in German – not because of performance, but only because German is not ir mor tongue.

    Many of se posts report from a school year that is already a few years or decades ago. Today, of eleven million pupils in Germany, one in ten has no German nationality and every third has a migrant background. So is this widespread everyday racism still re? Or is reality in classrooms a long time ago?

    Survey only since Pisa shock

    Last week, University of Mannheim published a study showing that not much has changed. Researchers from Department of Pedagogical Psychology had submitted dictate to teaching students. All texts were identical, with errors in same places. Sometimes dictation was supposedly written by a boy named Max, sometimes by a Murat. The result: Murat was rated a half note worse on average. A year earlier, team had studied influence of immigrant background on math notes. 1,500 high school students were regularly tested for two years. Here too: Despite same basic conditions as language skills and social background, children from migration families were rated worse for same performance up to half a note.

    In USA, scientists have long been involved with ethnic minorities in schools. But in Germany research strand is "in its infancy", says Sabine Glock from Institute for Educational Research at University of Wuppertal. Here, children with a migrant background have only found ir way into research after so-called Pisa shock.

    Sabine Glock's studies also confirm topicality of accusations of MeTwo. In one of her studies she presented teachers with fictitious student descriptions. Although in descriptions abilities of students were equally good, teachers classified language competence of students with Turkish name worse than that of ir classmates. In addition, Glock found out by testing what people associate with certain groups that teachers and teaching staff students are more negative than ors compared to a group of immigrant students. "It is different for teachers who have a migrant background mselves or who have had much more contact with children from immigrant families in past," says Sabine Glock. They are currently trying to find more reasons why se negative attitudes are less pronounced in some cases.

    That re is a disadvantage in schools is also demonstrated by study diversity in classroom of Berlin Institute for Empirical Integration and Migration research (BIM) and Expert Council of German Foundations for integration and migration from year 2017. In this wide-scale multi-level investigation, scientists have been able to find out that teachers have lower expectations of Turkish-born first graders than or groups – even if y objectively share same benefits Provide. In this respect, anticipation is an important factor for learning success, says Tim Müller, staff member of BIM who participated in study. "If you have high expectations of a child, invest in this more time, let him get more funding," says Müller. If teachers take care of students with a migrant background less, performance shears go furr apart, according to Müller's sis. And: If students were repeatedly brought to ir deficits, this could lead to demotivation and performance degradation.

    Date Of Update: 05 August 2018, 12:00

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