Has Free Access To Education Created A Meritocratic Society?

1637 words - 7 pages

This essay will attempt to determine whether access to free education for everyone in the United Kingdom has led to the creation of a meritocratic society. A meritocracy is a social system whereby success depends solely on the skills and efforts of a person rather than their social status or gender. It is an ‘extension of a general system of rewarding merit’. (Sen: 2000: 8). Any person, no matter who they are or where they are from can achieve their goals by working hard. In the education system, the rewards are qualifications, these allow a person to advance to further stages of life and so are essentially a vital form of social mobility. Sen (2000: 1) states that ‘[t]he concept of ‘merit’ is deeply contingent on our views of a good society’.
Before the Industrial Revolution, the education system was extremely limited. Most children were educated at home or in small church-based schools. The education system in England at this time consisted of ‘haphazard system of parish and private adventure schools’. (Williams, cited in www.educationengland.org.uk/history). They were only educated to a certain level and the primary focus was on the importance of working on a farm and skills needed to do this. Throughout history, a girl’s education ‘if she was lucky enough to have one…consisted of religious instruction, reading, writing and grammar and the occasional home craft such as spinning…[it was] scanty, superficial and incoherent’. (www.educationengland.org.uk/history).
Families were extremely self-sufficient and generations of families lived together and all took part in the duties and responsibilities that came with farming, there were no specific gender roles, they were all encompassing. Any type of higher education was reserved for the elites within society and in particular, men. Stephens (1998) stated that this source of discriminative education played a vital role in the fusion and creation of an elite group and in turn segregated society.
The Industrial Revolution brought about a transformation of the existing society. It created the notion of the nuclear family where the father went to work and was the sole breadwinner, and the mother stayed at home to look after the children and the household. Self-sufficiency was lost and families depended on the wage of the father in order to survive, necessities had to be bought. It essentially created an organic solidarity where society relied on each other whereas before a mechanical solidarity existed where people relied solely on their family unit for survival.
The revolutionary technology involved with the industry ‘required much more than limited reading skills acquired through moral catechism’. (Benn & Chitty: 1996: 1). Knowledge became a commodity where some was seen as more important than others. Educated people created the Industrial Revolution through their use of selling and marketing knowledge. Society began to recognise the value of intelligence as the future workforce depended on it. This...

Find Another Essay On Has Free Access to Education Created a Meritocratic Society?

Cloning: Has Science Created A Frankenstein?

1982 words - 8 pages Cloning: Has Science Created A Frankenstein? In Shelley's " Frankenstein" the scientist Victor Frankenstein is out to create life by putting human parts along with electricity. His quest is to be able to create life in a way which has never been done or thought of before. Victor Frankenstein may have been motivated by the death of his family, hoping to find a reverse to death in an attempt to cheat death. He may have also been motivated by

Freedom of Expression Is Vital to a Free Society

1257 words - 5 pages given to all people. That truth is still true today; free speech should allow any individual to express an opinion without interference or censorship by the government unless there is substantial justification. The Supreme Court has recognized instances where some speech may require restrictions, but not because it judges it offensive, irresponsible, or immoral. Freedom of expression is vital to a free society. It allows for equality when

Everyone Should Have Access to Higher Education

1200 words - 5 pages particular person is. The US would like to think that it has moved on from racial discrimination, but it is still present. A cost free education would be the one thing that every person in the US has the privilege of partaking in. No one could judge another by their race and prevent them from a higher education. “With free higher education, people have the ability to improve their own future utility, irrespective of their present economic standing

Everyone Should Have Equal Access to Education

2038 words - 8 pages Education is the most important thing in a persons life especially in a child’s life. Many things can get in the way of a child’s educational future and many people have their own opinion or theories on how well educated children come about. The cold hard truth is that upperclass parents do have more educated children, but the reasons for it are very statistical and vary. Wealthier parents tend to have more educated children not just because of

My resume just to get free access - jp, La - assignment

540 words - 3 pages ). Reality TV has changed over years as Laurie Ouellette continues to provide examples and evidence throughout the story showing us negative and positive effects of the changes. Public broadcasters such as the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in the United Kingdom has definitely played a huge role in defining and developing televisions civic potentialities using it as an instrument of education so citizens might fulfill their national ‘duties

Has the welfare state created a dependency culture

1779 words - 7 pages This essay about has the welfare state created a welfare dependency culture is going to look at single parents who are trying to go back to work, job seekers allowance, one of new labours Christians, Frank Field, Bill Jordan and Marsland. Firstly In order to answer this question the essay will look at what is meant by the words welfare dependency. Welfare dependency is a situation where people on welfare, such as those receiving unemployment

How Has Technology Created a More Efficient Washing Machine?

1110 words - 4 pages will be the same as the regular ones. (Choose Unscented Soaps Pag 2) One might say that is evident that technology has vastly improved society as a whole and has enabled companies to have a larger clientele thus created economic growth. However, despite advances due to technology most positions that require laborers still only pay the minimum wage required by law. Therefore while business owners benefit from advances in technology there is

"Everybody Has Free Choices" discuss in relation to Alfred A. Montapert's quote

630 words - 3 pages "Every person has free choice. Free to obey or disobey the Natural Laws. Your choice determines the consequences. Nobody ever did, or ever will, escape the consequences of his choices."The quote above was written by Alfred A. Montapert and I believe that it is a very definitive quote representing what kind of free personal choices everyone is granted. It tells us that everybody has the chance to decide our future and where we go. I agree with

The Effect on Poverty on Access to Education

2488 words - 10 pages and mental development of black children and to deprive them of some of the benefits they would receive in a racially integrated school system (Wormser). The disenfranchisement of African Americans during slavery and Jim Crow era has had many effects on America as a whole economically and socially. Whole families stuck in a cycle of poverty, limited access to education, limited social mobility, transformation from de jure segregation to de facto

GOVERNMENT SHOULD PROVIDE FREE EDUCATION TO CITIZENS

1125 words - 5 pages need to be exposed to citizens in order to provide the citizens with good attitudes and knowledge. However, many people make the money as an excuse to not having education, especially direct education due to the cost that they need to pay. As a result, many people suggest and request that government should provide free education to citizens. From my opinion, government should not provide free education to citizens for several reasons. The

Free to Low Cost College Education

797 words - 4 pages Steven Hancock 03/20/14 Professor Hudspeth English 100 Free to Low Cost College Education I as a student at a public University in Kentucky have noticed concerns and had many of my own about the cost of higher education the United States. Much of my school is paid by through loans and some through a scholarship. And for much of my peers they pay for school like I do. It can be extremely tough and overwhelming looking at your loan statement

Similar Essays

Nstant Access To Information Has Created Smarter Society

683 words - 3 pages Essay Topic: Instance access to information has created a smarter society. The internet is considered a way of gaining knowledge and information in meantime. This is because the ability of providing all type of information, which can help people to learn more in any type of sciences. As a result of continuous evolution, searching for information does not exceed few seconds which makes the internet the best choice for many people. This essay

This Is A Cause And Effect Essay Explaining How Education, Free Speech, And Contraception Contribute To A Free Society

1319 words - 5 pages Vehicles of FreedomWe have the privilege of living in a free and open society, a society kept afloat on an open sea of oppression by providing and allowing education, freedom of speech, and contraception. Through readily available education we establish a citizenry with the opportunity to communicate clearly and understand each other in ways unavailable to a less educated people. Freedom of speech is a necessary vehicle for navigating the

The Status Of Asylum Seekers In The Uk The Dissertation Focuses On The Provision Of Public Services To Asylum Seekers And Refugees, Emphasizing That Less Than Equitable Access Has Functioned Against...

7554 words - 30 pages Untitled The status of Asylum Seekers in the UK Description of this piece: The dissertation focuses on the provision of public services to asylum seekers and refugees, emphasizing that less than equitable access has functioned against their successful integration into British society and their assimilation of British culture. Given that the primary cause of demographic and population changes in the country since 1998 has been

"Magik" An Introduction To A Story Challenging The Unseen; (A Boy Who Has Been Outcast From Society Finds Safety In His Self Created Magic.)

787 words - 3 pages the cold stung all eyes. He stood there in a shabby coat and muffled trainers. Shadows danced around him, looming away from his pale face. He whispered, taunting the air, while spinning around in circles until he felt his thoughts leave his body. His mouth was dropped in sorrow. He wept as all atonement absconded his body. He was left there alone, nothing but a spec of flesh, invisible to the huge universe.It had all changed, it was so different