Universities take affirmative actionBBC News.
The racial quotas have sparked wide controversy in Brazil. Many who are against them argue that easing access to higher education denies the principle of merit that brings excellence to universities. Quota critics also argue that Brazil has never before had public policies based on race and that this establishes divisions in society.
Before the Quotas Law was introduced for federal universities, the State University of Rio de Janeiro was a pioneer of affirmative action. After 10 years, Rector Ricardo Vieiralves says their experience challenges critics' arguments and that the quotas programme has been successful. He says there are fewer dropouts among students admitted through quotas, and they are the ones who graduate the fastest.
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