Both in the international context and in Flanders (the Dutch-speaking part of Belgium), research shows that many young people experience social exclusion in relation to education. However, research evidence concerning structural social inequality in education is predominantly underpinned by an outcome-based approach, since educational policies and practices are largely informed by a human capital model. Inspired by the theoretical insights of the Capability Approach, we aim to contribute to process-oriented knowledge about the ways in which educational and social welfare actors can support socially vulnerable young people in realising their capability for education rather than focusing on human capital. We draw upon a rich empirical basis of participatory biographical research with young people in the system of part-time vocational education and workplace learning, perceived as the residue of the educational cascade mechanism in Flanders and pertinently revealing problems of social exclusion and exit of young people.
SOURCE: Caroline Vandekinderen, Griet Roets, Hilde Van Keer & Rudi Roose, “Tackling social inequality and exclusion in education: from human capital to capabilities”, International Journal of Inclusive Education, Published online 1 August 2017
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