Articles de presse

Segregation in Basic School in Haiti, Reflecting the Social Relations of Inequality

This article aims to establish, on the basis of
a mixed explanatory sequential estimate, how actors of the
educational system (teachers and school managers) use
academic and social mechanisms to distance strong
students from the weak by means of categorizing or
distributing them unevenly and differently in the school
space. On the theoretical level, while relying on Bourdieu's
structuralist constructivism, cultural discontinuity theory
and systemic discrimination as a framework for analysis,
this study combines three approaches to the sociology of
education (functionalist, conflictualist and the approach of
rational choices) as epistemological base, to try to
understand the dynamics of school segregation and the
mechanisms, by which it reflects the social relations of
inequality. From a methodological point of view, it begins
an empirical research conducted in the Western
Department, starting; on the one hand, from a survey
conducted by questionnaire with 303 actors (100 teachers,
95 parents, 13 managers of institutions and 95 students),
and four group interviews with five teacher groups, four
individual interviews with principals. Using quantitative
and qualitative methods in an explanatory mixed sequential
quote process, quantitative data analysis is followed by
qualitative analysis to consolidate and explain the
quantitative results.

Jacques Abraham


At the end of the analysis of the results in our study, we
have seen that schools are categorized (Catholic, Protestant,
secular, community, municipal, presbyteral, public, etc.).
Moreover, not only do these schools offer different
qualities of education. One is preferable to the other, but
they are also socially differentiated, because the poor
communal, community, public, presbyteral and secular
schools concentrate social groups of pupils, majority of the
poor, whereas the independent, Protestant, independent,
congregational, secular schools welcome mainly favored
and intermediate students (Joint, 2005, D. Pierre, 2012, Tardieu, 2015), according to the results of the study. This
makes it clear that school segregation is the superficial
image that faithfully reproduces the social relations of
On the basis of our results and the theories mentioned
above, school segregation is the superficial image that
faithfully reproduces the social relations of inequality,
especially through the basic school, all things being equal.
Nevertheless, the results of our research should be
interpreted with caution, since some authors believe that
school segregation is not necessarily the result of an
established student separation policy. A first objection may
be raised to the representativeness of the sample
interviewed, because for practical reasons we only
interviewed key respondents from the education system
(Pupils, parents of pupils, teachers and school managers).
In this sense, social desirability could be a possible
explanation. The study is also not general in scope since
not all respondents were randomly selected, and schools
were intentionally selected from sampling by reasoned
choice, so it is a non-probability sample. Respondents were
inclined to respond in the socially valued sense.
It should also be noted that the other departments are not
the subject of this research. This link is observed in the
department of the west; does it exist in the other nine
departments of the country? Unfortunately, we cannot
answer this question in our research. As a result of our
study, a first to our knowledge at the level of the Haitian
fundamental school, we would like similar studies to be
carried out in several departments in order to confirm or
refute our results.
Our research offers also the opportunity to explore a few
possible avenues. It would be appropriate and even useful
to conduct such research in all departments of the country;
then calculate the inter-institutional and intra-institutional
school segregation index and look for the correlation
between the two variables to verify whether or not there is a
cause-and-effect relationship

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