Journal of East China Normal University(Educationa ›› 2017, Vol. 35 ›› Issue (2): 1-11+114.doi: 10.16382/j.cnki.1000-5560.2017.02.001

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Could Government-run Public Education Guarantee Educational Equity: An Observation and Analysis Based on a Club Model

WU Hua   

  1. School of Education, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310028, China
  • Online:2017-04-20 Published:2017-03-27

Abstract: Inequity in education is a universal phenomenon, yet previous studies have paid too much attention to the superficial phenomenon, but failed to come up with a shared framework to analyze the mechanism where educational inequity is generated. This article attempts to construct a Club Model based on the observation of the real-world club, so as to clarify the source of people's rights. To discuss equity or educational equity, it's necessary to compare different subjects based on their equal rights, which means that clubs tend to divide people into different groups of subjects with given rights. Only in the same club is it possible to discuss whether its members share the equal rights. This makes it easy to understand that rights and justice are all public goods provided by clubs, and it's possible to discuss educational equity or educational inequity under a framework and offer some suggestions about policy-making to improve educational equity.#br#Using the Club Model, this article discusses three propositions. First, justice could be achieved on the premise of people's acquisition of rights, only when justice is based on legal rights can it be deemed as guaranteed justice. Second, to achieve justice, the amount of public resources should be taken into consideration, as no rights of equity could be realized without enough public resources. Third, there are two kinds of justice, competitive justice and shared justice. Last, there are three strategies which can help reduce or eliminate inequity, and this article suggests a more logical alternative to achieve the goal other than the universal way of realizing educational equity.#br#The analysis shows that inequity throughout K-12 tends to be the byproduct of government-run public education. There exists an inner relationship between government-run public education and educational inequity. Public education forms the institutional premise of how educational inequity is generated. The development and the realistic logic of government-run public education have become an effective mechanism to minimize or eliminate educational equality. #br#Furthermore, this article explores two public education systems deemed as almost-equitable. One is the Finish small class, small school Model. The other is Education Vouchers Model. In the case of China, it might be a better choice to take the advantages of both models. #br#In conclusion, the article provides an institutional design based on the Club Model. It's suggested that a voucher system should be in place for all children to attend the compulsory education. This system could be established through the joint fiscal appropriation by the central provincial and local governments. Meanwhile, it is expected that such a system could provide an unparalleled advantage for increasing the chance of educational equity, educational efficiency and giving more freedom to parents and children in selecting their dream schools.

Key words: K-12 education, educational inequity, Club Model, Education Vouchers Model