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A new form of educational inequality? What we know and what we still do not know about the immigrant-native gap in Italian schools

TitleA new form of educational inequality? What we know and what we still do not know about the immigrant-native gap in Italian schools
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsAzzolini D
Secondary TitleItalian Journal of Sociology of Education
Volume3
Issue1
Pagination197-222
Date PublishedFebruary 2011
PublisherPadova University Press
Place PublishedPadova, IT
ISSN Number2035-4983
KeywordsEducation; immigrant-native gap; Italy
Abstract

 Investigating the educational gap between students with migration background (SMB) and natives is becoming more and more important in Italy, as the immigrant student population has been constantly growing and becoming increasingly diverse in the last decade. School administrative data show that SMB face a systematic educational disadvantage compared to their native classmates. However, empirical research on educational inequalities has only recently begun to cover this topic. Going through the most relevant empirical studies thus far realized, this paper is aimed at answering two major questions. The first one asks whether research does provide corroborative evidence on the existence of an immigrant-native gap and which educational outcomes have been examined. The second question is aimed at understanding to what extent ‘traditional explanations’ of educational inequalities (i.e., socioeconomic background) account for the observed immigrant-native gap and which other new explanations have been advanced. Finally, the paper attempts to enlighten possible future directions for research, considering uncovered topics, underexploited data sources, and methodological improvements.

URLhttp://ijse.padovauniversitypress.it/2011/1/9
DOI10.14658/pupj-ijse-2011-1-9
Paper: