Equity and Mass Participation in Mexican Higher Education. an Analysis of Two Vulnerable Groups.

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 08:30
Oral Presentation
Judith PEREZ-CASTRO, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico
In Mexico, the issue of equity in higher education began to be part of public policies until the 1990's. Higher education institutions assumed equity as part of their mission, based on two principles: the expansion of opportunities and the leveling of startup conditions.
In this paper, we present the results of a research, whose objective is to analyze the possibilities and limitations that people in vulnerable situations have to enter, stay and graduate from higher education. Especially, we are interested in two groups: people in poverty and people with disabilities.
The results show us that, although there has been some progress in the last two decades, only 10% of the youngsters between 18 and 22 years old from the decile I are able to reach higher education, while, in the decile II, the proportion is 14.5%. In contrast, 100% of the youngsters in the age group from the decile X and 68% from the decile IX attend tertiary education.

Regarding persons with disabilities, only 5.7% from the 7 million 184 thousand Mexicans with some kind of limitation are able to study at least one year of higher education. The average years of schooling among this population is 4.7, it means, half of the national average, which is 8.9 years. The relationship between poverty and disability increases the risk of exclusion, since it is estimated that around one third of Mexican households with one or more members with a disability comes from the two poorest deciles. So far, the most important program to expand educational opportunities has been the Maintenance Grants, which has operated since 2001. Although, its results have been more important in terms of the permanence, rather than in access to higher education.