Illiteracy condoned in schools

2015-09-02 06:00

THE latest research by Stellenbosch University into the literacy level of Grade 5 pupils in rural schools endorses the assertion by respected educationist Professor Jonathan Jansen that our education is “rubbish”.

In 240 schools studied Grade 5 pupils were reading at Grade 3 level. Education is dysfunctional when the reading age and chronological ages differ - especially at national level.

Reading is a chronic problem in our schools where in the main there are no more libraries. Pupils are seriously disadvantaged when they find themselves in situations requiring them to read to learn.

A national campaign to foster learning to read is a priority. Regretfully, not all teachers are equipped to teach reading and this should be Sadtu’s priority – not getting away with group copying in Grade 12.

Learning institutions are supposed to foster positive changes in school communities, on the contrary pupils are leaving these institutions ill-equipped to function in the next phase of their education. This is a serious indictment on the system from teachers to circuit managers to district managers. There is no evidence of any intervention programmes as not all departmental officials are competent - many are political appointees and have absolutely no idea of whole school development.

Government is too busy decriminalising pubescent sex in primary schools while illiteracy is condoned.


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