Sunday, January 25, 2009

Hypocrisy: Incomes based education

Human hypocrisy reaches its fullest bloom in the field of education. No swindler or imposter can match the duplicity of political parents who say one thing about education in public speech and do quite another when choosing a school for their own children.

African leaders shout against colonialism but send their children to private schools in Europe. British Labour Party politicians smashed the fine Grammar Schools and set up the miserable Comprehensive Schools but made sure their own children avoided the Comprehensive Schools like the plague. ANC leaders call for affirmative action and teaching in African languages but send their own children to schools teaching in English where most of the teachers are white.

The first matric results have come out in Outcomes Based Education. The system would better be called Incomes Based Education since the exam results depend mainly on how wealthy the parents are. If you are rich you can choose a private school or a Model C school and get good results. If you are poor you are stuck with rest of the state schools, which with a few honourable exceptions have improved little if any since apartheid times, where you will get bad results.

South Africa is not alone with dropping educational standards. School exams in Britain are now much easier than in the past. An English school exam paper for 12- year-olds in 1895 was incomparably more difficult than exams for 17- year-olds today. What matters more is that sufficient numbers of children are being adequately educated for the modern economy. This is not happening in South Africa.

There are comments that the maths paper was much too easy. You only needed 40% in three subject and 30% in another three to pass, and yet more than a third of candidates failed. Universities complain about the worsening quality of new entrants.

The education system is failing the large majority of black children. When the Afrikaners came to power, they set up excellent schools teaching in Afrikaans and their leaders sent their own children to them. If the ANC leaders did the same thing, this would finally give a good education system to black children.

Unfortunately their hypocrisy is too deep, and they will continue to send their own children to Model-C schools while the majority of state schools for black children will continue to swell the ranks of the unemployed.

2 Opinion(s):

Liezel said...

I feel especially sad about this topic because this is just so unfair. It robs bright kids of the chance to do so much more with the talent they have.
This same issue was starting to show here in NZ with Helen Clark of the previous Labour party wanting more "equal oppurtunity education" which obviously suits the average Maori but is a ball and chain around the neck of the smart kids. Preventing them in reaching their full potential. Thank goodness for John Key and the Nationalists now back in power!

FishEagle said...

Hi Liezel, thank goodness!