Discipline and skill rather than radical changes can fix education

Alan Fuchs MPL

DA Gauteng Spokesperson for Education

Gauteng MEC for Education, Panyaza Lesufi, has intimated that a complete overhaul of the education system will be required to achieve the elusive objective of quality educational outcomes.

He said in a recent Education Portfolio meeting that we cannot keep on doing what we have been doing and expect a different result.

This is surely an admission that despite the fact that billions of rand have been pumped in to the system over the last 20 years, that the education system implemented by his party has failed to achieve the desired objectives.

The DA’s assertion is that the education system is no closer to producing the quality of matriculants who could seamlessly take advantage of tertiary education opportunities, and contribute positively towards the economy of this country.

This view is backed by the recently released report of the Ministerial Committee set up to evaluate the National Senior Certificate (NSC) which indicates that there are “widespread public and professional concerns about the standard and quality of the NSC as a qualification”.

However, in the Western Cape, the DA has implemented the following steps with much success:

  • Introducing a scarce skills allowance for teachers;
  • Introducing training workshops for teachers during school holidays to improve their teaching skills in literacy and numeracy;
  • Building additional specialised maths and science secondary schools that focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics education; and
  • Implementation an Improved Outcomes Strategy for Grade 12s in under-performing schools.

The DA proposes that the MEC take a leaf out of the Western Cape Education Department’s book and implement the steps mentioned above, before trying to reinvent the wheel.