Role of education Darcy Fletcher Functionalists believe education performs two contradictory functions , on one hand they believe that educations prepares children for their specialised role acquired to their skills and potential. So they can perform at the best they can at their role after education. On the contrary they believe society needs to share the same goals and outlook in order to co-operate. Functionalism is based on the view that society is a system of interdependant parts which is held together by value consensus. Durkheim argued that society has to feel a sense of social solidarity , he believes that without this form of social cohesion , society would be impossible because each person would pursue their own ‘ selfish’ desires.
According to Parsons, the family is a social system that is functional to our society. He believed that society is a system of interrelated parts that can create an equilibrium, which is the normal state of affairs. The social institutions such as schools, mass media, and political systems are examples of the interrelated parts of society from a functionalist perspective. He also views the family structure as a patriarchy. Parsons explains the four basic problems that a society must confront in order to survive.
The family for example contributes a lot toward society as it is the main route of reproducing the population and teaching them the important lesson of socialization as they grow. Functionalists believe that the family introduces traditional culture to the new members of society and creates well joined members of society. The family is seen to provide important statuses that will be well known in society and recognised statuses such as lower class and higher class along with defined background history to new members. The family is seen to be responsible for replacing and reproducing new family members when the older generation pass away. Furthermore functionalists believe that families offer material and emotional security and provide care and support.
Outline the functionalist perspective on the role of education Sociological functionalist have identified education as a crucial part of the socialisation process as it transmits and reinforces society’s norms and values, prepares children for adult roles and selects young people in terms of their abilities for crucial roles. This essay outlines Durkheim’s, Parsons and Davis and Moore’s perspective on how education creates an impact on the structure of society. Durkheim’s perspective on the role that education had on society was that it shapes an individual and prepares them for the ‘real world’; beyond their comfort zone. He argued that, in complex industrial societies, schools serve a function which cannot be provided by the individuals’ family nor their peer group. For us, school is a miniature version of society as it provides us with skills that we need once we enter work or when starting a family also, the experience prepares us for interacting with members of society and the rules that society has.
It is also seen as a tool for socialisation, and a key social institution in sustaining the value consensus for the society to run smoothly (Webb et al, 2008). According to Murdock (1949), the four main functions of the family are identified as: education, which is the socialisation of the young into society shared norms and values of learning right from wrong. Parsons (1955), agreed with Murdock, but stated that the functions of the family in the society are of two folds: the primary socialisation which is the socialisation of the children to equip them with the norms and values they need to succeed in society. He goes on to argue that if children are not successfully socialised, they will not fit the value consensus and will not be able to function in the society (Harris, 2008). Murdock (1949) added that the family exists to provide economic function and that parents have the responsibility to take care of their family financially, usually through harmonious division of labour where the man takes on the instrumental role, and provide for the family, and the woman adopts the
Within the society, it socialises with its institutions and this gives the ability to meet the needs and goals of society. Functionalists also have a biological analogy and compare society to a living thing. For an example, the institutions (the organs of society) need to be healthy for it to work when its ‘sick’ society contains a lot of anomie (lack of shared norms and values). The family meets the needs of society such as the need to socialise children. Functionalists see the family as an important sub-system.
Different groups have different views on how beneficial the family is to society. Functionalists, who traditionally dominated the sociology of the family, feel that the family is necessary for the running and continuation of an integrated society. It is assumed by functionalists that if there is the existence of a social institution, then it must have a purpose or a function. Functionalists therefore see the family as beneficial for society. To functionalists, society is an 'organism' that contains different segments which come together to keep society running smoothly.
Merton???? The family passes on culture, teaching children right from wrong and how to behave within society. The government (institution) provides education for children, on which the family is dependent to help children grow up enabling them to get better jobs. This is cyclical because it then is passed on to the next generation. In return, families pay tax on which the state depends.
Functionalists believe that society is held together by social consensus or cohesion, in which members of the society agree upon, and work together to achieve what is best for the community as a whole. In education, the functionalist view proves that society’s values and expectations are reflected in the system, and social norms are simply learned through interaction with teachers and peers. Functionalism has received criticism for neglecting the negative functions of an event such as divorce. Critics also claim that the perspective justifies the status quo and complacency on the part of society's members. Functionalism does not encourage people to take an active role in changing their social environment, even when such change may benefit them.
On the one hand, it is an endorsement of the power and necessity of the parental role and brings with it not only responsibility but the possibility of contributing to the well-being of family, community, and society. On the other hand, the obligation for shaping the malleable stuff of childhood into a virtuous, competent adult figure is, at the least, a daunting prospect. And should one’s child begin to show signs of faltering, rebelliousness, failure, or any number of other human frailties, parents are apt (and their neighbors, too) to blame