Title

The role of education in the construction of a post-apartheid South Africa

Publication Date

1-1-2000

Degree Name

MA in International and Intercultural Management

First Advisor

Abdoul Diallo

Abstract

The purpose of Apartheid was to segregate people in South Africa based on their skin color. Under the apartheid system, four different racial groups; white, colored (mixed race), Asian and black existed. South Africa was ruled in the interest of Afrikaners, who were white persons of Dutch/ Huguenot ancestry and first immigrated to South Africa in the seventeenth century. Colored, Asians and blacks were excluded from the ruling government policies, and were denied their citizenship rights. In 1953, The Bantu Education Act was passed. The act emphasized that education must prepare people for their opportunities in life, which for black Africans was to be in the rural areas as migrant workers. Moreover, the history textbooks were rewritten to initialize the achievement of Afrikaners. In 1994, apartheid officially ended. The new democratic government led by Mr. Nelson Mandela, who was elected as the president of South Africa started. As a part of reforms taken place, education plays an important role to reconstruct the collapsed nation of South Africa. The paper attempts to answer the following questions: Is the new South Africa school system fair to both white and non-white students? What is Bantu Education? What is changed in the school system after Apartheid ended in 1994 in South Africa? And what educational goals are emphasized now at school in South Africa? Qualitative data is collected in this study to explore the questions above. Content analysis for review of documents and structured interviews were conducted to compare and analyze the structures and purposes of education systems under apartheid and the new government. The study concludes with recommendations for the betterment of new education in South Africa. The essential key to a new educational system is non-racial education. Students, teachers, parents and the rest of people in South Africa must participate in the process of the school reform. It is the only way to let the government hear and take serious considerations of their voices and experiences.

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