In the name of equity: Basic vs quality education

There is a growing conflict of interest between delivering a measure of education to all South Africans and providing a quality education that develops thought leaders and visionaries.

Government seems incapable of meeting both demands and in the quest to give children the opportunity to learn, the quality of education in South Africa is rapidly deteriorating.

University of the Free State Vice Chancellor and Rector Professor Jonathan Jansen touches on these issues.“In the name of equity” political leadership has sought to standardise learning in higher education facilities and “dumb down those institutions”. As a result they have effectively ruined the reputation of leading universities and driven away many serious scholars, he says.

“South Africa already has a number of universities that are not universities”.

Prof Jansen talks about Umulusi’s practice to lower education standards as a means to improve the pass rate and allow more children to progress to the next level.

“Because we are embarrassed every year by the results, lets lower the bar….”

According to the Prof. the outcome is that the top black children in the country will aim to complete their education in foreign institutions and the nation will continue to lose the very people who could solve the social problems we now face.

What do you think?

Is it more important to provide a basic education than to deliver a quality education? Can we have both?

Listen to Professor Jonathan’s address

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