With the understanding that social inequality and income concentration in Brazil are increasing and taking increasingly perverse forms of social exclusion, this article aims to reflect on the process of exclusion in society in general and in education in particular. To this end, it sought to identify some interpretations of the term exclusion, identifying it as a contradiction in the historical movement of the capitalist system. He also drew attention to how this inconsistency in modernity manifests itself in the field of education, especially at the end of the 20th and early 21st century. As in the overall public policies of the State, the sense of exclusion underlying education policies has been identified as a mediation tool to ensure the class structure of capitalist society. Seeking to identify public policies for basic education aimed at social inclusion, a number of programmes aimed at meeting the poor population are being developed, with the aim of integrating and maintaining this population in the educational system, with a focus on the Bolsa-Federal School Programme, which is an action to guarantee a minimum rent.