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School-based and Mapuche education: Perspectives of Mapuche parents

Daniel Quilaqueo, Héctor Torres, Segundo Quintriqueo

This article emerges out of an epistemological study of the primary characteristics of school-based and Mapuche education, using an approach centred on educational science and the epistemic logic of Mapuche parents in Chile’s La Araucanía region. With the reforms to Chile’s education system currently underway, it is vital to contribute to the debates on the ways of thinking, imagining and criticizing the school education given to Mapuche population, with the starting point being the results of dual educational immersion (Mapuche education/school-based education). Based on qualitative research conducted among Mapuche parents and kimches (Mapuche wisemen), this study identifies colonial facets of their discourse regarding school, which have come about through the kind of schooling received by students in schools located in Mapuche environments. However, reforms by the Chilean state aim to implement bilingual intercultural education in order to incorporate Mapuche educational content into the school curriculum. This study concludes that the educational content mentioned in the analyzed discourses may help to transform the hegemonic and asymmetric model that can still be found in the bilingual intercultural education offered by the state. This will help reconsider the concept of school in order to adapt it to the inter-ethnic relations in the life context of Mapuche and non-Mapuche families.