Social justice of the Maya people in the Guatemalan education system

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Social justice of the Maya people in the Guatemalan education system

Type: Master thesis
Title: Social justice of the Maya people in the Guatemalan education system
Author: Hogers, Fabian
Issue Date: 2017-10-31
Keywords: Guatemala
World Bank
Maya people
Social justice
Abstract: During the Guatemalan Civil War, which lasted from 1960 to 1996, the indigenous Maya people of Guatemala have suffered immensely. Namely, 170.000 Mayas were killed and thousands have had to flee to Mexico. In 1996, the Peace Accords were signed and promises were made for social justice of the Maya people in the education system, which had excluded them for centuries. At the same time, the World Bank started sponsoring a programme of heavily decentralized schools in Guatemala, called PRONADE schools, where local communities could easily open and manage primary schools through funding of the Ministry of Education. This thesis seeks to test to what extent social justice of the Maya people has been realized in these PRONADE schools compared to traditional public schools. Thereby, the approach of the Word Bank in schooling will be evaluated, using Fraser’s three-dimensional model of social justice as an indicator of success. Fraser’s dimensions of social justice consist of economic justice, cultural justice and political justice, which have frequently been applied to the education system. Fieldwork in Guatemala was carried out in March-April 2017, combining source analysis with in-depth semi-structured interviews. The results of this research show that, although the goals of the World Bank of equal access to quality education and the provision of bilingual education might have been partially realized, social justice still has a long way to go in the Guatemalan education system. Realization of economic justice in the PRONADE schools remains ambivalent, however, the PRONADE schools did score slightly better on cultural and political justice compared to traditional public schools, although by far not satisfactorily.
Supervisor: van der Maat, Eelco
Faculty: Faculty of Humanities
Department: International Relations (Master)
Specialisation: International Relations
ECTS Credits: 15

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