Open access peer-reviewed chapter - ONLINE FIRST

Teachers’ Beliefs about Poverty: A Barrier We Must Face

Written By

Viviana Gómez, María Paz González and Pablo Gutiérrez

Submitted: December 10th, 2021 Reviewed: December 21st, 2021 Published: January 24th, 2022

DOI: 10.5772/intechopen.102323

Pedagogy - Challenges, Recent Advances, New Perspectives, and Applications Edited by Hülya Şenol

From the Edited Volume

Pedagogy - Challenges, Recent Advances, New Perspectives, and Applications [Working Title]

Dr. Hülya Şenol

Chapter metrics overview

65 Chapter Downloads

View Full Metrics


The poorest children have the lowest educational results, which the neoliberal model has deepened. The State transferred its responsibility to private and municipalities through supply subsidies, but the amount did not ensure quality. To solve this problem, it provides an additional subsidy for each \"priority\" child, demanding accountability, but with high institutional and individual consequences. But the gap remains, and teachers are held accountable for these low results. The literature shows that teachers hold beliefs that prevent them from dealing constructively with this reality. Beliefs about poverty were investigated by asking 828 teachers from low and lower-middle SES schools with standardized test scores above and below the average of similar schools to point out four characteristics of vulnerable schools. The data were analyzed by means of thematic and semantic field analysis. A shared narrative was found, independent of the type of school, attributing failure to the degraded context that surrounds it, from which the families and children come. Neoliberal policies based on accountability have intensified the work of the teacher and the constant threat has led them to self-defense. There is an urgent need to change the approach if opportunities for the poorest children are to be improved.


  • beliefs
  • poverty
  • teachers
  • accountability
  • social justice

1. Introduction

In the last four decades in Chile, neoliberal policies have synchronized the educational system with the market economy [1]. This has implied, on the one hand, the introduction of new concepts and processes such as quality, efficiency, competition, and accountability [2] more typical of a business model than of an educational one [3]. On the other hand, it has led to profound changes in terms of financing, evaluation, and monitoring of these policies in schools. The main consequence was the disappearance of public education in 1982 and the mutation of the State towards a subsidiary role, delegating the responsibility for education to private or decentralized providers in exchange for a subsidy that functions as an incentive to supply and demand [2]. According to [4],

The state acts as a market-makerin this scenario, as it produces and organizes markets for public assets, such as education. It achieves this not only through a competitive funding system but also by creating policy tools that assign value to education providers through differentiating market signs, such as scores, rankings, and quality ratings, which are then linked to rewards and sanctions. These market signsare crucial for producing school hierarchies, distinction, and comparison, granting school's symbolic reputation and, therefore, a sense of competition (p. 116).

However, this arrangement did not ensure improvement in the supply of education, nor did it improve the quality of learning for the poorest. On the contrary, the system of single-value subsidies, as designed, benefited more those with greater sociocultural advantage [1].

1.1 An education policy of accountability based on results

Despite the attempts of the post-dictatorship democratic governments to strengthen state support to education, a series of public policies that deepened the neoliberal model followed, which were finally integrated into a single system aimed at granting funding to schools whose core is managerial accountability, which is strongly associated with results in large-scale evaluations instead of processes [5].

In 2008, the SEP Law [6] was enacted, aimed at improving educational equity for the most disadvantaged groups, providing additional resources to subsidized schools according to the concentration of “priority students”. This subsidy was provided after the school had signed an Equal Opportunity and Educational Excellence Agreement with the Ministry of Education and submitted a School Improvement Project (SIP) in which the school committed itself to achieve important advances in terms of curriculum, school management, school coexistence, and human resources management [6, 7].

More recently, new public institutions were created to closely regulate the best implementation of these public policies, the Agency for the Quality of Education (ACE) and the Superintendence of Education. This was intended to ensure access to quality education and equity for all [8]. The ACE is in charge of the national evaluation process and, according to its results, annually classifies schools according to the performance of 4th-grade students in the test of the Sistema Nacional de Evaluación de resultados de aprendizaje del Ministerio de Educación de Chile (SIMCE) and other complementary indicators, but with a much lower weight. In this way, schools are classified as “autonomous”, “emerging” or “recovering” according to the criteria shown in Table 1. These demands have placed a high pressure on schools, in which eight to nine standardized tests (approximately four levels and four subjects) are applied annually [9].

WeightingCriteria“Autonomous” schools“Recovering” schools
70%Achievement in the SIMCE TestAverage in SIMCE higher than the median obtained by similar schoolsAverage in SIMCE less than 220 points
Percentage of students with more than 250 is higher than the median of similar schoolsPercentage of students with more than 250 is less than 20%
Percentage of students with more than 300 is higher than the median of similar schools
30%Administrative dependencyNo municipalMunicipalNo municipalMunicipal
Priority student retention rates25%25%25%25%
Priority Student Pass Rates25%25%25%25%
Integration of teachers and parents to the IEP20%17%20%17%
Educational innovations and attraction of external support institutions15%13%15%13%
Improvement in working conditions and operation of the establishment15%13%15%13%
Participation of teachers in the national Teacher Evaluation System7%7%

Table 1.

Criteria and weighting for the classification of schools according to their achievements in the SIMCE test and in the other improvement indicators committed to in their IEP.

The “emerging” category is applied when schools show intermediate results, which are qualified as medium or medium-low; when schools have only two SIMCE evaluations or when they are new establishments, or their student body is less than 20.

1.2 Accountability with high consequences

The classification obtained by schools has a direct impact on the funding they receive from the state. High-performing schools are classified as autonomous, receiving double the subsidy per priority child compared to schools classified as emergent. At the other extreme, “recovering” schools that show sustained low performance may have consequences such as the removal of the management team or be subject to definitive closure [4, 10]. These schools are monitored by the ACE through repeated inspection visits aimed at providing feedback on teaching and school management [11].

The basic principle of neoliberal ideology is that institutions do not feel that they have a secure and stable budget, because permanent quality improvement is achieved only through the promise of incentives, risks, and sanctions [4]. However, after more than a decade of its implementation, standardized assessments continue to report a great influence of socioeconomic level (hereafter SES) on learning, showing a large gap between low and high SES students [12, 13]. These results have led us to wonder about teacher subjectivity. Could there be a problem in the beliefs they hold about poverty?

1.3 The crucial role of beliefs

Beliefs are “individual judgments about the truth or falsity of a proposition, a judgment that can only be inferred from a collective understanding of what human beings say, intend, and do” [14] (p. 316). Moreover, because of their affective, evaluative, and episodic nature, they become filters through which new phenomena are interpreted [15] and expectations are developed that influence the teacher’s action [16].

Teachers are not immune to the influence of stereotypical beliefs [17], as these are acquired unconsciously from the experiences and habits of their social environment, which are put into practice on an ongoing basis [18]. A relationship has been found between stereotypical beliefs and low expectations in teachers, which has led to demand changes in the initial and continuous training of teachers to influence their beliefs so that they understand that poverty is a product of gaps in access to opportunities and not of deficiencies in mentality, culture or people [19].

1.4 Research question

What beliefs about poverty hold in-service teachers working in low and lower-middle SES schools with above or below average performance on the SIMCE test of schools of the same type?


2. Methodology

A qualitative design was applied that attempts to detect the importance and meaning of group discourse within a sociocultural context, making explicit the perspective of the subjects within the framework of their global discourse [20].

2.1 Sample

A total of 828 teachers from 1st to 4th grade of the elementary school in the regions of La Araucanía (IVE1: 85.5%) and Los Lagos (IVE: 81.1%) in the southern part of Chile, and Metropolitan (IVE 65.5%), in the center of the country, participated. The sample is representative, proportional to the national percentage of schools that had the following characteristics: 1) received state subsidy (municipal: 59.6% and subsidized: 40.4%); 2) belonged to the low and lower-middle SES, classified as Type A and B respectively; and 3) achieved performance above and below the average of schools in their same group and region according to national standardized tests (SIMCE). All participants signed an informed consent form after receiving information about the study.

The average age was 40 years (SD: 16.3) and 13 years of teaching experience (SD: 11.4). 83%of the sample were female teachers. A total of 88.3% had a basic education teaching degree. Table 2 shows the distribution of the participating teachers by region.

RegionLow-SES, High SIMCELow-SES, Low SIMCELower-middle SES, High SIMCELower-middle SES, Low SIMCETotal%
La Araucanía5564756025430.7
Los Lagos3939755520825.1

Table 2.

Number and percentage of participating teachers according to the region, SES, and performance of their schools.

2.2 Instrument

In order to collect teachers’ beliefs about vulnerable schools, we asked, in the context of a broader questionnaire, the following open-ended question: “State four characteristics of a vulnerable school”, which were to be completed in four blank rows provided for this purpose.

2.3 Analysis

The responses were processed through thematic analysis and semantic field analysis, in order to configure their beliefs. First, the corpus to be studied was established, namely “the four characteristics of the vulnerable school pointed out by teachers from four types of schools”. Next, three evaluators read the transcripts and lifted the categories that emerged from the characteristics mentioned by the teachers. These were “students”, “families”, “teachers”, “schools” and “social system”. In addition, the textual extracts that exemplify them were selected. After comparison and establishment of coincidences, the extracts belonging to each category were joined and these were renamed using new labels to nominate each semantic nucleus (e.g., “low motivation to learn”, “students with behavioral problems”) included in the theme “students”. Finally, the meanings attributed by the participants were discussed and the semantic field representing the narratives about the vulnerable school underlying the teachers’ ideas was established.


3. Results

As shown in Table 3 more than half of the mentions refer to families, with teachers and the system being the least mentioned. Students and schools are in between the two trends. We were interested to know what specifically they say about these clusters, are positive or negative characteristics mentioned? These questions motivated us to a second analysis of the data, which we carried out with thematic analysis and semantic field analysis.

CategoriesLow-SES, High SIMCELow-SES, Low SIMCELower-middle SES, High SIMCELower-middle SES, Low SIMCETotal%
Social System20.430.5151.220.2220.7

Table 3.

Frequency and percentage of teacher references in each category of analysis.

The themes that emerged from the analysis of teachers’ responses regarding students, families, and schools are presented in Tables 46, respectively. It is worth mentioning that there were no differences in the themes among the four types of schools. It is also observed that the teachers coincided in the order of importance given to each theme, which is reflected in the tables in the arrangement of these from left to right. Each table includes the distinctive features that describe each theme. Thus, for example, we have that the family (see Table 3) was the most mentioned actor, and of this, the theme most emphasized by teachers was the educational level of parents. A review of the features attributed to each theme allows us to see a rather negative conception of the children’s group of origin.

Component/ ThemeEducational levelFamily characteristicsFamilies commitment and supportFamily compositionCultural level
FamiliesLow level of education; illiteracy; no readersPoverty; drug addiction; alcoholism; delinquency; violence and abuse; family problemsNo commitment to education; low participation; low expectations; lack of accountability; neglect; lack of supportDysfunctional; poorly constituted; single parent; disaggregatedCultural deprivation; difficult access to culture

Table 4.

Themes and characteristics attributed to families in vulnerable schools.

Component/ ThemeSchool retentionReadiness to learnMotivation to learnBehavioral aspectSocio-emotional dimensionSocioeconomic characteristic
StudentsHigh absence; school dropoutlack of habits; Special educational needs; Learning problems; low concentration; poor vocabulary; lack of early stimulation; studyDemotivation; low expectations, no vision of the future/life project; Lack of compromiseBad discipline; aggressiveness; lack of manners and normsParental neglect; loneliness; taken in by other family members; rights violatedSocial risk; vulnerability; malnutrition; multiple deprivations

Table 5.

Topics and characteristics attributed to students in vulnerable schools.

Component/ themeSocial environment that surrounds themResourcesStudent characteristicsSelection
SchoolsHigh social risk; conflictive sectors; high dependence on drugs and alcohol; delinquency; vulnerabilityLack of pedagogical resources; lack of technology; infrastructure problems; unmotivating environment.High rate of priority children; low performance on national tests; high diversityNot selecting its students; exodus of good students; high student turnover; low enrollment

Table 6.

Topics and characteristics attributed to schools.

Table 4 shows that what stands out most for the teachers is the educational level of the parents and the negative characteristics of the families.

Table 5 presents the themes and traits mentioned by teachers with respect to students. There is a tension between the recognition of negative dispositional aspects of the children, such as problems in learning and low motivation, in contrast with others that would be the product of external forces that would be causing great and serious damage to them. This tension could provoke contradictory feelings in teachers, perceiving them as difficult children, on the one hand, and as children worthy of compassion and pity, on the other.

The themes shown in Table 6 reveal that teachers perceive their schools to be under constant threat from the conditions that surround them and that they feel are beyond their control.

Something interesting to note here is that teachers hardly mention themselves within the characteristics of a vulnerable school. Since there is no clear theme that can be attributed to a particular type of school, it is not possible to condense them into a table due to their low frequency. However, task overload, lack of professional development activities, and lack of collaborative work could be noted as some themes mentioned.

The great coincidence in the themes, the order of importance, and the features attributed to each theme led us to explore whether there is a semantic network that explains how teachers working in different types of vulnerable schools conceive of vulnerable schools. After analyzing the responses, we were able to identify a shared narrative on the topic (see Figure 1). In the first place, it can be seen that the school appears as a victim of the environment in which it is located and as the result of certain conditions imposed by the educational system that has classified it as a vulnerable school. Thus, the socio-cultural environment - which is seen as a place plagued by vice, violence, and crime - determines the bad behavior of the students and the type of family context offered to them at home, which would be the continuity of the external context. These negative characteristics of the family would in turn be caused by their low educational and cultural level and by their inability to change their living conditions given their dysfunctional nature, which are often single-parent families. These latter factors would cause a low family commitment to school and to the education of their children, to whom they would provide very little emotional support, which would have repercussions in the socioemotional area and in the disposition towards learning, preventing them from achieving good educational results. On the other hand, certain school conditions such as the lack of resources and the impossibility of selecting their students, lead them to feel obliged to accept all students feeling without tools to solve the serious discipline problems, learning difficulties, and low motivation to learn that will probably lead students to drop out of school.

Figure 1.

Semantic network on the vulnerable school (own elaboration).


4. Discussion

Our motivation for conducting this study was to find out whether there were differences in beliefs about poverty between teachers in vulnerable low and lower-middle SES schools with high and low performance on the national SIMCE test. Our premise was that schools with good performance, despite being in vulnerable contexts, would have more positive beliefs than those with below-average scores. Contrary to what was predicted, our data show us that there is a shared narrative that evidences a negative evaluation of the environment in which they work, which would confront them with problematic children and families that would prevent them from reaching the standards required by current public policy. Our reflection in the following lines will try to stress the effect of accountability policies on teachers’ tasks and identity by configuring performance scenarios in which they must act strategically in order to receive the prescribed rewards or punishments.

Although the contribution of the SEP Law in terms of financing cannot be ignored, since it has made it possible to acquire technological resources and pedagogical material for schools, in addition to hiring new support staff (psychologists, special educators, and education assistants), increasing teacher hiring and training hours [21, 22] and contracting external consultants [9], it must also be recognized that it has had undesirable consequences for many schools in contexts of poverty by making them more visible due to the demand to show good results in the short and medium term. These schools have been popularly labeled as “vulnerable schools”, which has implied the exodus of non-priority students to more selective schools and a substantive increase in private education [2, 7].

Under the neoliberal model, schools are not only evaluated and ranked according to a competitive logic but are also considered to be comparable to each other [23]. Unfortunately, comparison and competition require that someone always be at the bottom of the ranking [24] and the public policies developed in the last 40 years have left the public school associated with poverty [25]. On the other hand, due to the many demands associated with the results, teachers feel that national tests have standardized and bureaucratized their work, leading them to perform arbitrary and useless tasks [25], which does not allow the development of critical thinking, self-evaluation, and accountability, nor will it motivate school improvement and innovative thinking [23]. Worst of all, trust is placed outside schools, in agencies that are not efficient in sharing useful information for teachers, disempowering them from their expert judgment about learning [24]. When teachers perceive that policies restrict their professional autonomy, in addition to intensifying and deprofessionalizing their work, they adopt strategies of resistance to reforms [5, 25] and will most likely develop narratives of self-defense [23].

A perverse effect of incentive policies that encourage competition between schools and teachers is that they have stimulated individualistic thinking and strategic behavior that enhances personal productivity [26]. This has led teachers to calculate their efforts and to act according to external standards in order to achieve a positive and profitable image [9]. Another powerful effect is seen in institutions, which create school narratives that can strategically eliminate, debate, highlight or obscure scores, ranking and position in the hierarchy, to generate a sense of institutional success, as well as to justify or separate themselves from their indicators of underperformance, transferring responsibility and assigned blame for failure onto others, such as students and their families [23] (pp. 756–757).

Consistent with our results, many studies at the national level have collected negative attributions of teachers towards families, which they consider “poorly constituted”, “dysfunctional” or “violent” [25]. They complain that families are an obstacle to their children’s education, as they do not attend meetings, do not support homework, and do not collaborate with punctuality on arrival [27]. In addition, they feel overloaded with work because they have to start from the bottom due to deficiencies in home education, taking care of basic needs and personal care (cleaning, clothing, food); affective needs (due to precariousness and lack, mistreatment, violence, and abuse) and basic rules of behavior (punctuality, respect for the turn, asking permission), as there is much permissiveness and loss of authority and, in addition, the whole family is involved in drugs or crime [27, 28].

In social comparison, groups are evaluated according to their social status as a respected/unrespected group and liked/disliked by others. They are likely to be evaluating families as low social status and disliked group. This group includes people who fail, who are seen as parasites and abusers of the system, such as vagrants and addicts in general, who arouse emotional reactions of disgust and contempt, which may lead to attacking or neglecting them because of the great discomfort they arouse [29].

Rojas and Leyton (2014) have found negative attitudes towards priority students. Teachers are upset because they believe that the special subsidy goes directly to the child and not to the school. They also show some resentment with priority students because they feel that the law transformed them into “untouchables” by being prevented from making them repeat the grade [21]. In addition, they feel that the priority classification makes them deserving of multiple welfare “handouts”, which is detrimental to non-priority children whose families work very hard. In other cases, a paradox is observed, as priority students are both desired and rejected [27]. They are desired because they mean a significant increase in school admissions, but they are rejected because they produce enrollment leakage and teaching difficulties.

Teachers consider students as “others” who are different from them and that, due to their cultural legitimacy, it is their duty to “culturize” them. They see them as “problem” children, aggressive, uneducable, who do not adapt to the educational system, and who must be domesticated [30]. They also feel that they must put aside pedagogical aspects in order to provide affectivity, sociability, and quality of life to students, but they also think that they only go to school to eat and play [31]. They think that their children are always hungry and lack affection and that their learning difficulties are related to poor nutrition, dyslexia, dyslalia, and psychological disorders that should have been resolved at the preschool level. These disorders would produce cognitive disorganization, limiting their development in basic skills such as describing, comparing, relating, and understanding [32].

It has been found that teachers in low-performing schools attribute the results to the physical and intellectual conditions of their students, drug addiction, and conflicts in high-risk neighborhoods, and therefore see little possibility of change [33]. In a study on diversity, it was found that teachers classify their students into two broad categories according to the origin of their learning difficulties a) those diagnosed with clinical pictures of permanent or transitory learning difficulties and b) those socially vulnerable due to low family cultural capital, the presence of alcoholism and drug addiction, delinquency, the absence of parental figures, abandonment and prostitution [34]. Teachers feel that they work with the most disadvantaged population, with the “Cachochildren”, those whom nobody wants [23].

Using the social comparison model, students could be evaluated by teachers as a disrespected but likable group, which includes those who are considered less capable of managing their own lives because they have significant deficits or shortcomings, and for whom they feel pity, an ambivalent emotion that is both paternalistic and neglectful [29].

The effects of the policy of accountability have led to various consequences on teachers. On the one hand, it has technologized their work, deprofessionalizing it. On the other hand, it has aroused negative emotions such as fear of the permanent threat of closure of schools due to persistent underperformance [25]. But in the face of this bleak scenario, many turns to vocation to reaffirm their commitment to these schools [35] and raise their self-perception with a sense of sacrifice, altruism, and transcendence in their teaching action [25]. According to Assaél and Cornejo (2018), teachers feel trampled, repressed, and undervalued, but do not possess for the moment, a more elaborated reaction. In this becoming of subjectivities, many teachers wish that vocation begins to be part of the accountability mechanisms [25].

Unrest also stems from conditions that affect teachers’ job stability. The ambiguity of neoliberal policies has increased “labor flexibility”, making their work more precarious. For example, the Teachers’ Statute allows termination of the contract or reduction of the working day with ease for the employer and the SEP Law reduced stability and hourly wages [26]. This has deepened the feeling of low valuation due to low salaries and work intensification, resulting in discomfort, anger, and fatigue [25]. Most teachers feel pressured and sued by these policies, in addition to feeling unfairly judged by society, because they appear to be responsible for the failure of the poorest students [5, 25, 36, 37].

According to Pascual Medina and Rodríguez Gómez (2018), subjects go through different levels as they become aware of power asymmetries [38]. These start from the first level of “submission” where “asymmetry” exists, but this is perceived as natural, given, and unmodifiable. A second level is “pre-critical” in which “inequality” is felt, in the face of which certain dissatisfaction and resentment begin to manifest themselves and explanations and causalities are sought. The third level would be “integrative criticism”, in which one openly feels “injustice” and begins to analyze social reality with greater precision in order to propose actions for change. The last level would be “liberating criticism”, in which after perceiving “oppression”, the process of social transformation as such begins.

When considering the effects on the learning of the most disadvantaged students, accountability reduces the curriculum to the subjects measured by the standardized test, classes concentrate on rehearsing for the test, cultural and social diversity are considered as problems, and the integral education of students is renounced [24]. It is therefore paradoxical that the Chilean model is used as a reference of quality and an example of success at the international level [25].


5. Conclusions and recommendations

First, we can conclude that teachers have a common narrative about the vulnerable school. This means that the themes, traits and the effect that these variables have been transmitted almost unalterably from one group of teachers to another. We interpret this as a defensive response to the pressures of the neoliberal system that imposes classification categories that no school wants to be in and highly visible negative consequences that threaten the psychological and professional integrity of teachers. The struggle to survive in this scenario leads them to rescue small achievements or to distort information by shifting the responsibility for low results to students and their families.

The teachers’ justification is that the degraded environments surrounding the schools are determining the type of families that bring their children to school and that their nefarious behavior would be affecting their children’s willingness to learn. These discourses are further associated with feelings of pity towards the children and of disgust and contempt towards the families. In this study we see that teachers are only at a second level with respect to becoming aware of asymmetries, looking for causes of failure outside the school’s responsibility, on which they feel they cannot act directly. We must support schools to move to the levels of integrative criticism and liberating criticism so that they can empower themselves by creating adequate solutions to the challenges they face and the ideals they can set for themselves as a community.

Before concluding, we would like to reflect on the title we used to begin this chapter: are teachers’ beliefs the barrier to be considered in the face of the low results obtained by the poorest children? In our analysis, not only did we find a shared narrative without variations from school to school, but we were also able to verify the same narratives in other studies at the national level, all of which were carried out a few years after the implementation of these policies and continue to be reproduced to this day. This story is a barrier, indeed, but it is a way of showing the resistance of teachers to falling into disrepute.

Neoliberal policies in education are based on mistrust, as they postulate that only through incentives and threats will school and teachers mobilize to improve their quality. This causes teachers in schools with high rates of priority students to face stressful working conditions, such as intensified bureaucratic and meaningless tasks, super vigilance, and the obligation to cover the entire curriculum, in addition to preparing children for testing, which leads them to ultimately reduce opportunities for those who need it most.

We believe that there is an urgent need to transform accountability policies towards a notion that encourages school communities to engage in thoughtful and complex dialogs about school challenges and opportunities and ways to improve. Teachers should engage in ethical discussions about the daily practice of schools and promote both professional development and the actualization of democratic principles [23]. This is not only because their purposes and assumptions are not being achieved, but also because they impede the achievement of greater social justice. Intelligent accountability should be based on principles such as trust, dialog, school and teacher autonomy, equitable participation, high expectations, respect for diversity, contextualization, creation, and strengthening of school communities with their own identity, all of them as means for all actors to be mutually responsible for education [24].



We thank the Fondo Nacional de Desarrollo Científico y Tecnológico (FONDECYT) of the Agencia Nacional de Investigación y Desarrollo de Chile (ANID) for funding research project No. 1120550 and we also thank IntechOpen for funding a large part of this publication.


Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.


  1. 1. Donoso S. La reproducción de la desigualdad intergeneracional y nuevas formas de exclusión social producto del diseño político del sistema educacional chileno [the reproduction of intergenerational inequality and new forms of social exclusion as a result of the political design of the Chilean educational system]. Cuaderno CRH. 2011;24(61):135-152. DOI: 10.1590/S0103-49792011000100010
  2. 2. Villalobos C, Quaresma M L. Sistema escolar Chileno: Características y Consecuencias de un Modelo Orientado al Mercado [Chilean school system: Characteristics and consequences of a market-oriented model]. Convergencia, Revista de Ciencias Sociales. 2015;69:63-84
  3. 3. Etcheberrigaray G, Lagos J, Cornejo R. Concepciones sobre docencia en el nuevo Marco regulatorio del sistema escolar chileno [conceptions about teaching in the new regulatory framework of the Chilean school system]. Revista de Psicología. 2017;26(1):1-13. DOI: 10.5354/0719-0581.2017.46693
  4. 4. Falabella A. The seduction of hyper-surveillance: Standards, testing and accountability. Educational Administration Quarterly. 2021;57(1):113-142. DOI: 10.1177/0013161X20912299
  5. 5. Parcerisa L, Verger A. Accountability and education policy: A review of international evidence and future research challenges. Profesorado, Revista de Currículum y Formación del Profesorado. 2016;20(3):15-51
  6. 6. Ley N° 20248 Establece Ley de Subvención Escolar Preferencial [Law No. 20248 Establishes the Preferential School Subsidy Law]. Biblioteca del Congreso Nacional, 25 de enero de 2008. Available from:
  7. 7. Valenzuela JP, Villarroel G, Villalobos C. Ley de Subvención Escolar Preferencial (SEP): algunos resultados preliminares de su implementación [Preferential School Subsidy Law (SEP): some preliminary results of its implementation]. Pensamiento Educativo. Revista de Investigación Educacional Latinoamericana. 2013;50(2):113-131. DOI: 10.7764/PEL.50.3.2013.7
  8. 8. Consejo Nacional de Educación. Sistema nacional de aseguramiento de la calidad de la educación escolar (SAC) [National quality assurance system for school education (SAC)]. 2018. Available from: <>
  9. 9. Falabella A. The ethics of competition: Accountability policy enactment in Chilean schools’ everyday life. Journal of Education Policy. 2020;35(1):23-45. DOI: 10.1080/02680939.2019.1635272
  10. 10. Parcerisa L, Falabella A. La consolidación del Estado evaluador a través de políticas de rendición de cuentas: Trayectoria, producción y tensiones en el sistema educativo chileno [the consolidation of the evaluating state through accountability policies: Trajectory, production and tensions in the Chilean educational system]. Education Policy Analysis Archives. 2017;25(89):1-24. DOI: 10.14507/epaa.25.3177
  11. 11. Munoz-Chereau B, González A, Meyers CV. How are the ‘losers’ of the school accountability system constructed in Chile, the USA and England? Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education. 2020;(online): 1-20. DOI: 10.1080/03057925.2020.1851593
  12. 12. Agencia de Calidad de la Educación. Resultados educativos 2018 [Educational results 2018]. 2019. Available from:
  13. 13. Agencia de Calidad de la Educación. Resultados educativos 2019 [Educational results 2019]. 2020. Available from:
  14. 14. Pajares MF. Teachers’ beliefs and educational research: Cleaning up a messy construct. Review of Educational Research. 1992;62(3):307-332. DOI: 10.3102/00346543062003307
  15. 15. Fives H, Buehl M. Spring cleaning for the “messy” construct of teachers’ beliefs: What are they? Which have been examined? What can they tell us? In: Harris KR, Graham S, Urdan T, Graham S, Royer JM, Zeidner M, editors. APA Educational Psychology Handbook: Individual Differences and Cultural and Contextual Factors. Vol. 2. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association; 2012. pp. 471-499. DOI: 10.1037/13274-019
  16. 16. Benner AD, Mistry RS. Congruence of mother and teacher educational expectations and low-income youth's academic competence. Journal of Educational Psychology. 2007;99(1):140-153. DOI: 10.1037/0022-0663.99.1.140
  17. 17. Riley T, Ungerleider C. Self-fulfilling prophecy: How teachers’ attributions, expectations, and stereotypes influence the learning opportunities afforded aboriginal students. Canadian Journal of Education. 2012;35(2):303-333
  18. 18. Lange-Vester AL. Teachers and habitus: The contribution of teachers’ action to the reproduction of social inequality in school education. Revista de Sociología de la Educación-RASE. 2012;5(3):455-476
  19. 19. Gorski P. Poverty and the ideological imperative: A call to unhook from deficit and grit ideology and to strive for structural ideology in teacher education. Journal of Education for Teaching. 2016;42(4):378-386. DOI: 10.1080/02607476.2016,1215546
  20. 20. Serbia JM. Diseño, Muestreo y Análisis en la Investigación Cualitativa [design, sampling and analysis in qualitative research]. Hologramática. 2007;3(7):123-146. ISSN: 1668-5024
  21. 21. Rojas MT, Leyton D. La nueva subjetividad docente. Construcción de subjetividades docentes en los inicios de la implementación de la Subvención escolar Preferencial en Chile [the new teaching subjectivity. Construction of teaching subjectivities at the beginning of the implementation of the preferential school Grant in Chile]. Estudios Pedagógicos. 2014;XL,1:205-221. DOI: 10.4067/S0718-07052014000200012
  22. 22. Román M, Perticara M, Selman J. Uso de los recursos de la Ley SEP y su efecto en los resultados del SIMCE [Use of the Resources of the SEP Law and Its Effect on the Results of the SIMCE]. Informe Final. Fondo de Investigación y Desarrollo en Educación FONIDE, Ministerio de Educación. 2013. Available from:
  23. 23. Falabella A. Do national test scores and quality labels trigger school sef-assessment and accountability? A critical analysis in the Chilean context. British Journal of Sociology of Education. 2016;37(5):743-760. DOI: 10.1080/01425692.2014.976698
  24. 24. Flórez MT, Rozas T. Accountability from a social justice perspective: Criticism and proposals. Journal of Educational Change. 2020;21(1):157-182. DOI: 10.1007/s10833-019-09361-3
  25. 25. Carrasco A, Luzón C, López V. Identidad docente y políticas de accountability: el Caso de Chile [teachers identity and accountability policies: The case of Chile]. Estudios Pedagógicos. 2019;XLV,2:121-139. DOI: 10.4067/S0718-07052019000200121
  26. 26. Assaél J, Cornejo R. Work regulations and teacher subjectivity in a context of standardization and accountability policies in Chile. In: Normand R, Liu M, Carvalho L, Andrade D, Levasseur L, editors. Education Policies and the Restructuring of the Educational Profession, Global and Comparative Perspectives. Singapore: Springer; 2018. pp. 245-257. DOI: 10.1007/978-981-10-8279-5_17
  27. 27. Acuña F, Assaél J, Contreras P, Peralta B. La traducción de los discursos de la política educativa en la cotidianeidad de dos escuelas municipales chilenas: La metáfora médica Como vía de análisis [the translation of the discourses of educational policy in the daily life of two Chilean municipal schools: The medical metaphor as a way of analysis]. Psicoperspectivas, Individuo y Sociedad. 2014;13(1):46-55. DOI: 10.5027/psicoperspectivas-Vol13-Issue1-fulltext-363
  28. 28. Torche P, Martínez J, Madrid J, Araya J. ¿Qué es “educación de calidad” Para directores y docentes? [what is “quality education” for principals and teachers?]. Calidad en la Educación. 2015;43:103-135. DOI: 10.4067/S0718-45652015000200004
  29. 29. Fiske ST. On prejudice & the brain. Daedalus: Journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences: Political Pharmacology: Thinking about Drugs. 2007;136:156-159. Available from:https;//
  30. 30. Ajagan L, Castro A, Díaz A, Alarcón C. Proceso de reconocimiento del alumno problema Como legítimo otro de escuelas vulnerables [process of recognition of the problem student as a legitimate other from vulnerable schools]. Educaçao e Sociedade. 2014;35(127):529-547. DOI: 10.1590/S0101-73302014000200011
  31. 31. Pedagógicas R. Entre la discriminación y la soledad: las escuelas vulnerables vistas por sus docentes [Between discrimination and loneliness: Vulnerable schools seen by their teachers]. Docencia. 2008;35:41-48
  32. 32. Díaz R, Osses S, Muñoz S. Factores e interacciones del proceso de enseñanza-aprendizaje en contextos rurales de la Araucanía, Chile [Factors and interactions of the teaching-learning process in rural contexts of Araucanía, Chile]. Estudios Pedagógicos. 2016;XLII,3:111-128. DOI: 10.4067/S0718.07052016000400006
  33. 33. Rivera C, Volante P. Teorías subjetivas de docentes directivos sobre factores que definen la eficacia de los planes de mejoramiento educativo ley SEP [subjective theories of directive teachers on factors that define the effectiveness of educational improvement plans SEP law]. Estudios Pedagógicos. 2015;XLI,1:237-256. DOI: 10.4067/S0718-07052015000100014
  34. 34. Apablaza M. Representaciones sociales de profesores al respecto de la diversidad escolar en relación a los contextos de desempeño profesional, prácticas y formación inicial [social representations of teachers regarding school diversity in relation to the contexts of professional performance, practices and initial training]. Estudios Pedagógicos. 2014;XL,1:7-24. DOI: 10.4067/S0718-07052014000100001
  35. 35. Falabella A. El mercado escolar en Chile y el surgimiento de la Nueva Gestión Pública: El tejido de la política entre la dictadura neoliberal y los gobiernos de la centroizquierda (1979 a 2009) [school markets in Chile and the emergence of the new public management: The fabric of policies between a neoliberal dictatorship regime and center-left democratic governments (1979 to 2009)]. Educação & Sociedade. 2015;36(132):699-722. DOI: 10.1590/ES0101-73302015152420
  36. 36. Ferrada R. Críticas a las políticas de rendición de cuentas según lo que el profesorado chileno de secundaria considera justo en educación [Criticisms of accountability policies according to what Chilean secondary school teachers consider fair in education]. Revista de Sociología de la Educación (Rase). 2017;10(3):330-246. DOI: 10.7203/RASE.10.3.9905
  37. 37. Assaél J, Contreras P, Corbalán F, Palma E, Campos J, Sisto V, et al. La SEP en escuelas municipales emergentes: ¿cambios en la identidad docente? [SEP in emerging municipal schools: Changes in teacher identity?] Paulo Freire. Revista de Pedagogía Crítica. 2012;11(11):219-228. Available from:
  38. 38. Pascual Medina J, Rodríguez GD. Accountability en Chile. Un estudio sociocrítico sobre innovación educativa y control de la docencia [A socio-critical study on educational innovation and teaching control]. Revista Iberoamericana de Evaluación Educativa. 2018;11(2):133-150. DOI: 10.15366/riee2018.11.2.007


  • Index of educational vulnerability of the Region.

Written By

Viviana Gómez, María Paz González and Pablo Gutiérrez

Submitted: December 10th, 2021 Reviewed: December 21st, 2021 Published: January 24th, 2022