Ramphele: SA education like a sinking ship

2012-10-25 11:19

Johannesburg - Mamphela Ramphele has compared the state of education in South Africa to a sinking ship, Beeld reported on Thursday.

Speaking at the third congress of teacher's union Naptosa in Benoni on Wedesday, Ramphele, the founder of the Citizens Movement, an organisation that lobbies for social change, used the example of the Italian passenger ship the Costa Concordia, where the captain slept while his ship was wrecked.

Like Captain Francesco Schettino, who was the first to leave the sinking ship, so were the government officials, who ensured that their own children were brought to the safety of private schools, she said.

Just as Captain Schettino tried to conduct his rescue operation from the safety of the shore, so were the government officials attempting to manage the crisis in education from a distance, she said.

Teachers in schools were acting as "ambulance men" to save pupils, she told delegates.

According to Ramphele, it was time for South African parents and pupils to insist on their rights.

"I'm not just talking about the text books. Vacant teacher's posts must be filled, and not just filled for the sake of being filled - we need experts and specialists."

  • elspeth.hassall - 2012-10-25 11:38

    This Lady has it right...BUT where do you suddenly get thousands of well trained teachers,experts and specialists? It takes 4 years to train a teacher and a further (at least) 3 years to gain experience (to become an "expert". We are years behind, thanks to the closing of teacher training colleges, by the ANC govt. Also, well trained, expert/experienced teachers don't earn anywhere near what the "mine worker" wants...time to up the salaries etc. so education can attract the best brains in the land.

      luther.kingsley.5 - 2012-10-25 11:43

      ANC and brass you dont need the rest of the world or the Apartheid regime to tell you that you are incompetent and criminal... you have proved this yourselves relentlessly for 18years.

      dorette.forrester - 2012-10-25 11:43

      but then again elspeth there are teachers out there that are being paid too much. The dedication and commitment of some of our teachers are shocking. We have a problem with trying to attract a better quality candidate to teaching but the ones we've got leaves a lot to be desired. I have little faith that we will ever get teaching back on track unless they can be fired when they do not perform. There are people in the system that should not be there.

      phillip.vancoller - 2012-10-25 11:53

      There are thousands of "white" teachers looking for a job but like i said "white"!!

      jannie.devos.10 - 2012-10-25 12:00

      Elspeth, this Lady for president any day! And I'm dead serious. But the problems of education lie deep. To teach subjects like Maths and Sciences efficiently you need a teacher with at least a B.Sc degree. Who in his right mind, with a qualification like that, would consider teaching as a profession? The get paid peanuts! According to TV news now even less than the Lonmin mine workers. Until that is fixed education is dead.

      lownabester - 2012-10-25 12:17

      The only sane Lady left plus Thuli, We need more like her, nobody can corrupt her. Way to go ,Ms. Ramphele.

      jeremy.thewasp - 2012-10-25 12:43

      Yet the Minister of Education..old Angie still has her Job? Her fat ass should have been fired long ago! She should be out apologising to pupils and parents... - 2012-10-25 12:43

      This is what happens when you want to look good to another people. Funny thing though, if SA edu is bad then there are fools who are paying schools fees of R50 000 per quarter to get the same Umalusi metric certificate children studying under the tree get for free. "An A plus is the same as an A plus anywhere". Do not get dupe by the Private school. Math will be Math, any where you go in the world Math will stay Math. Parents who say that SA Edu is Bad are those people who sent their children to expensive private schools or to those gov schools where you pay exuberant fees, and their children are failing

      parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-25 12:44

      There are many white teachers who would love to get into those jobs.

      elspeth.hassall - 2012-10-25 12:51

      dorrett...I agree with you BUT those undedicated and uncommitted teachers are usually under qualified and only there for the money. And I agree about firing those that do not produce the goods BUT with our labour laws, it would take years :-(. We need to take many of those who are in the system and give them "on the job" training to be Teachers... not this new trumped up name "educators". point exactly...the better your qualifications & experience...the more you should be paid BUT we need good, qualified TEACHERS to do the assessments and not cadres who are there because they have friends in high places. I know of a well trained teacher with over 7 years experience, here & in UK, who attended every course offered, while over there, and is now earning less than 7K per month with NO perks! It is shocking!

      elspeth.hassall - 2012-10-25 12:55

      By the way...I did read, recently, that the KZN education dept are going to re-open the DOKKIES campus as an "on the job" training centre...what I am wondering is, where are they going to find the facilitators?

      Watkykj - 2012-10-25 13:59

      Ag please Tyson! Wake up! SA is the only place in the world where 33% to pass a subject....

      phillip.cwazibe - 2012-10-25 14:08

      I seem to remember that teacher training colleges were closed just after 1994.

  • colin.dovey - 2012-10-25 11:41

    Now THIS is the sort of person we need as President - BTW that Italian Ship's Captain is now in Prison - Zuma needs to face the music and let us hear those Tapes!

      ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-10-25 11:56

      Charges were dropped (by his criminal appointee) based on the content of the tapes. The reason Zuma doesn't want the tapes to be heard is that they contain evidence of his guilt and NOT his innocence.

      denis.gomo - 2012-10-25 13:38

      I think we don't necessarily need someone good at pointing out the obvious to be our president. We just need someone with a good moral standing who has the energy and clout to get this done, to fix stuff, more like a very good manager.

  • JAbu.R15 - 2012-10-25 11:41

    Here is another woman that talks lots of sense and our president chooses to ignore! hai we need change. to all those who will be going to mangaung please vote for change, and to all those who will be voting in the 2014 election please vote for change

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-25 11:51

      This woman and Thuli are 2 people that DESERVE respect. Full of integrity. If only we could vote either as president.

  • marius.vanwyk.5621 - 2012-10-25 11:44

    I compare the State to a sinking ship.

      ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-10-25 12:01

      I believe that under the ANC, RSA is more akin to the fabled city of Atlantis.

  • sthembiso.jali.50 - 2012-10-25 11:47

    Well this time around the captain is not just asleep... He is dead !

  • freddie.miff - 2012-10-25 11:47

    we need more women in government, not men who bonk more women...

      deon.louw.7505 - 2012-10-25 12:35

      They can get rid of Ange, she is not doing well at all.

  • tim.brink.1238 - 2012-10-25 11:47

    A shinning light! Her comparison of the Concoridia's captain should rather be made to scurvy rats jumping ship!

  • Vince.York - 2012-10-25 11:48

    Impeach and then indict zuma today! then All else will soon unravel and improve instantly as the DA checks and balances come into effect and the anc-pf moves over the bridge in musina!

      parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-25 12:45

      How about a contempt of court charge and lock him up until the tapes are handed over. Sweet, lawful, cheap and simple.

  • long.tom.509 - 2012-10-25 11:58

    The education level has been dragged down to the lowest commmon denominator,more than likely for good stats for the Government,what should have been done is raise the bar,in sport when you play against someone who is better than you ,you generally up your game,there is more than suffecient evidence that the Government has failed in every aspect of education.There are still many dedicated and hard woeking educators that need urgent support and a strong management team to pull education out of this hole,the nett results of the current situation will be seen in the next few years,glad to see that there are people like this that are talking out against the the Gov,it's a start..

  • - 2012-10-25 11:59

    This is what happens when you want to look good to another people. Funny thing though, if SA edu is bad then there are fools who are paying schools fees of R50 000 per quarter to get the same Umalusi metric certificate children studying under the tree get for free. "An A plus is the same as an A plus anywhere". Do not get dupe by the Private school. Math will be Math, any where you go in the world Math will stay Math. Parents who say that SA Edu is Bad are those people who sent their children to expensive private schools or to those gov schools where you pay exuberant fees, and their children are failing

      pravda.che - 2012-10-25 13:12

      it seems that you live above the 25th floor of some banking institution. you have never spoken to the working class. 40% do not even speak english. 30% have a smattering of the language, enough to be able to get AA jobs as tea ladies or delivery boys. 20% can actually answere a telephone with enough english not to tranfer you to the dead line, and a measly 10% actually speak the queens english. and if you ask this 10% where they went to school, its either a semi private school at R50k a year or zimbabwe. one thing i can say for uncle bob. his education programme is equal to what we had prior to 1994 in our net-blankes public schools, and he still allows the teachers to crack the whip. what we need here is a single speed education system, and corporal punishment to be brought back.

      mrova.blaza - 2012-10-25 14:07

      Employers know that its not the same Tayson, that's why some people get short listed and some don't.

      tasmee.hylkema - 2012-10-26 00:49

      I am one of those people that pay R65k a term for my kids education, not because I want to look good, because that education comes with a lot of sacrifices, but because I want to secure a decent future for my kids. The world out there is pretty competitive, and I can assure you, that although the schools are churning out matriculants, the majority are unemployable! Many cannot do simple basic math, or write in english effectively. This is ultimately the difference between the majority of matriculants that have scraped the bottom of the barrel through school entering the job market and those that went to school to honestly educate themselves. Unfortunately, your argument has dire holes in it, because all the current education system has managed to do, is widen the gap between the private school graduates and the government school graduates. And to be honest, most prestigious universities and companies tend to look at the QUALITY of education rather than the fact that a student has just passed. As for your last comments, private schools have the highest pass rates and university entrances! - 2012-11-01 14:49

      What expensive school fees buy you is the following: Sport trophies; Sport uniforms; Sport equipments; Expensive trips you still have to pay for; Participation certifications; Art courses; Talent classes; ENGLISH LANGUAGE (There 11 Official Languages in SA); Cleaning personnel; Food & Drinks at Events; i.e. Crab! It is easy to spot whether somebody has a child in expensive school, just look at the displayed trophies and participation certificates in their homes. Participating certificate is a wipe your behind paper.

  • trevbrewer - 2012-10-25 12:00

    Have a look at this great initiative being implemented by two youngsters in Johannesburg, they taking this problem into their own hands to try make a difference in South Africa, OUR home and OUR country.

  • johan.jacobs.33821 - 2012-10-25 12:00

    Zuma didn't appoint himself,he was elected by a majority,only that majority of voters can rid SA of him.I repeat voting in South Africa has got nothing to do with reality,it is about,emotons,and sentiment.

  • trevbrewer - 2012-10-25 12:02

    Look at this great initative being set up by two youngsters in Joburg to try curbs the education epidemic that is plaguing South Africa's Economic growth and development. They making a stand to change OUR home and OUR country.

  • Alphykay - 2012-10-25 12:08

    I tend to agree tremendously wth wat Mr Ramphela has said. Yes its true dat the education system of this country is going down the drain. The education n most departments of this country are led by the blind figuratively so as to speak. How can someone become a minister, director n mec of education without having been to class to teach? How can u become a minister of agricuture when you know nothing about livestock farming n etc? There can never be an accelerated growth n development on the education system of this country as long as we are stil being led by the blind.

      tsietsi.mshengu - 2012-10-25 12:19

      Even worse Alphy, a principal of a high school with a mere 3 year diploma, without any managerial qualification, and a head of department in a school heading 3 subjects when he specialises in one of those. Need I say more?

  • Joubs1957 - 2012-10-25 12:10

    I think it would be better likened to leaking submarine that has lost all power as well!

  • mrova.blaza - 2012-10-25 12:23

    isn't it quite ironic that every year the biggest slice of our budget money goes to education but it seems as if this is where we get the least ROI. This is one area of our society we must get right as a country in order to have any chance of better future.

      Jenny - 2012-10-25 13:48

      It is because they change the curriculum every three years and then all the children have to get new books to follow it. Why did they change the curriculum in the first place?

  • mbuti.manopole.3 - 2012-10-25 12:29

    The minister of education last refused to take the responsibility on the limpopo textbook SAGA, but she is always the 1st to jump with joy and claims the victory when the matric results are high I Ryt or am I Ryt? ? :)

      parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-25 12:47

      She's a real nasty piece of work, that is for sure. Never admit anything and collecting the pay-check is all she cares about.

      berni.venter - 2012-10-25 19:51

      Problem is Mbuti is how certain are we that creative mathematics wasn't used in those figures? The number of first years students failing is staggering, which points back to the lack of preparation received in high school.

  • mbuti.manopole.3 - 2012-10-25 12:29

    The minister of education last denied the responsibility on the limpopo textbook SAGA, but she is always the 1st to jump with joy and claims the victory when the matric results are high I Ryt or am I Ryt? ? :)

  • JohnDough - 2012-10-25 12:29

    Whats new? This is part of the great "Africanisation" plan - dumb the nation, promise the sheeple everything and deliver nothing while hogging the riches for the political elite.

  • briana.scott - 2012-10-25 12:36

    the ANC have to keep our country uneducated in order to keep the votes.

  • issa.kabudula - 2012-10-25 12:39

    This woman is one of the policy maker who if the government want development must be involved, she talks sense all along and she also gives way out not just accusations as other NGOs and oppositin parties do - phambili mama phambili!!!!

      jacqui.daanevanrensburg - 2012-10-25 13:51

      Issa.kabudula. No wonder Steve Biko was so fond of her. They would have formed a great government. When they murdered that man, they murdered part of our future.

      elspeth.hassall - 2012-10-25 15:33

      @ jacqui...just add Helen Zille (as journo she helped expose Biko's murder) to the mix and WOW!!!

  • len.murozvi - 2012-10-25 12:40

    the disaster is that it's not just the state education which is in shambles. The private schools are also just handing out homework and rushing to the rugby and hockey. the whole education mindset has to change

      berni.venter - 2012-10-25 19:59

      Agreed Len, but that is the model that has been forced on the educators. There was a huge outcry from experienced educators when the flawed outcomes based model was introduced. But they were branded old fashioned and obstinate and ultimately forced out. An acquaintance of mine studied at one of the now obsolete colleges and has not practiced for the past 20 years. None the less she still gets contacted regularly by Oz asking if she would be interested in a teaching position there. Basically our 'old school' teachers are in high demand outside our borders. Really sad that we cannot acknowledge the talent we have in our country!

  • Rob Allen - 2012-10-25 12:42

    Hopeless situation SA, but keep voting A N C you stupid corrupt mother effers!

  • parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-25 12:43

    Mamphela Ramphele, it is such a pity that the majority of your people simply do not see what you see, nor understand the real threat that they face from ANC rule. Please, enter politics for all our sakes.

      berni.venter - 2012-10-25 20:02

      Please stop using 'your'! All South African children are suffering and will continue to suffer while incompetent buffoons run the show. It rests with civil society to stop complaining and get pro active. The Dinokeng Scenario refers! Really good read and for free!!!

  • louis.nolte.3 - 2012-10-25 12:46

    Blame apartheid. Problem solved

  • ft.burhaak - 2012-10-25 12:56

    We all know that its a sinking ship.But if the minister and deputy are not fired by yesterday,its gona hit an iceberg!

      sean.redmond3 - 2012-10-25 16:34

      It hit the iceberg long ago. education has drowned.

  • magda.jansevanrensburg.50 - 2012-10-25 12:57

    @mbuti.manopole.3 - you are absolutely right! The results are high 'cause the passrate is only 30% !!!!! The outcomes: incompetent youth - incompetent students - incompetent grown-ups. Thus, the lower the pass rate, the higher the results and the higher the glory for the minister - CAN'T ANYONE NOT SEE THAT!!! At least raise the pass rate in schools - the children of today do not know how to study anymore BUT expect to become a minister one day!

  • olivia.karnak - 2012-10-25 13:01

    Respect! #salute#

  • mzondistanley - 2012-10-25 13:01

    Education development can not sink, but People in the Field of Education will keep on coming in and out, including the Speaker. Education Development is a Process and its quality does not improve or degenerate with personalities who live one life span!!! Its Dynamic and it Mutates alongside Generations of Human Species!!

  • markdare - 2012-10-25 13:02

    Bwahahahaha, its the stupid voters whose children are dumped with the moronic policies of the very government they voted into power, again and again. So if the voters are so stupid that they vote the ANC in again in 2014, well then the parents get what they deserve - a government who does not care about their childrens eduction.

      zamile.august - 2012-10-29 12:35

      pain will teach people!

  • harald.voney - 2012-10-25 13:03

    too late she cried....

  • Sipho Mbatha - 2012-10-25 13:21

    mamphele it's very painful that your darling Thabo Mbeki is the one who put the education system where it is right now, my question is why did you not see that in Mbekis time or you were concetrating on the love for him and that now cause he's not the president thats when you see the mistake but you cant attribute that to him you can rather attribute that to the one you hate. Niyadlala ngabantu kodwa uNkulunkulu uyonishaya ngelinye ilanga.

      Watkykj - 2012-10-25 13:56

      So its mbekis fault that the text books weren't delivered this year? Eish.....

  • vlammie.pilot - 2012-10-25 13:32

    Its too late Rampele !! your are just as dumb as the rest. Why not use the real names instead of comparing to a ship accident? The truth is this: NALEDI PANDOR the half brit wannabe paluka decided years ago to change the education system to OBE, and get rid of qualified educated white teachers. That was when the downfall of black education started. The sad truth is also that the damage is done, you are wasting your time commenting on education, especially if you don't have an education to start with. Explain to your children that they will never rise above the crap because mommy and daddy anc decided kids must stay dumb. LOL!!!

      jacqui.daanevanrensburg - 2012-10-25 13:54

      Sorry Vlammie. dr Ramphele has more of an education than you want to know. Naledi Pandor is half American, so what's your point?.

      vlammie.pilot - 2012-10-25 14:23

      @jacqui Naledi Pandor is the architect of this failed education system. Rampele is stating the obvious. Nothing groundbreaking. On your way up from the Marianas trench, hook up our education system and bring it to the surface please (since you know where it is)

      elspeth.hassall - 2012-10-25 15:42

      I think you are wrong...NP was not the architect of OBE...she has not been minister of education for THAT long...OBE was introduced much earlier in ANC reign...cannot remember the name of first minister, but it came from him. While I don't think NP is doing enough, she is a least trying to change the system with this new cirriculum, which, unfortunately, is confusing the lesser educated teachers even more :-(

      rakoma.adelice - 2012-10-25 17:24

      @elspeth, it was Kader Asmal!

      vicki.malatse - 2012-10-25 18:06

      So your are saying Naledi should have kept the bantu education?

  • luvo.luvos - 2012-10-25 13:39

    The motto says: \Keep 'em dumb enough\ so they don't bother you with clever questions\. Trouble is the ANC fears that should they raise education standards, which will make people much cleverer, no one will listen to their bull anymore. There lies the answer.

  • jacqui.daanevanrensburg - 2012-10-25 13:42

    What sinking ship?. Everything here has sunk that low a submarine can't find it anymore.

  • gary.desousa.7 - 2012-10-25 13:43

    It has all become so political. The unions run the schools,the ANC write the curriculam,the bulk of the teachers seem to only be there to get money. Who does any quality teaching? We spend the highest per capita on education but no schools, no computers, no upgrades?

      khethu.ndlovu.3 - 2012-10-25 18:33

      Gary, are u gonna be a complaining guru? according to u, everything that is not white needs to be blasted! I have much respect for the south african teacher! Given the condition @ which they have to work under, plse take time to visit any school in the township of your choice, spend only 30 mins in the class and let us know if you can endure that year in and year out, forget about the salary, i wouldnt want to be a teacher even if they pay me twice as they are currently being paid.

  • joshua.sematla - 2012-10-25 13:44

    Mxm tell us something we don't know

  • ft.burhaak - 2012-10-25 13:50

    If they build another Titanic,they must name it S.A.D.E,with Angie as captain and Surtee as vice captain.

  • Jenny - 2012-10-25 13:50

    South Africa’s education system was recently ranked one of the worst in the world. According to the 2011 annual national assessment figures, the World Economic Forum ranked South Africa 140th out of 144 which is lower than Lesotho and Swaziland. The ranking is very disconcerting for the South African education department and may be justified, as last year only 35% of grade 3 pupils could read at the accepted level and only 28% could do sufficient math. Need I say more?

  • karla.vanzyl.108 - 2012-10-25 13:56

    My mom was a teacher for 25 years, but more than that she couldn't handle... Her end salary was R4500 (with a R250 bonus to say thank you for all her years of teaching). And she graduated top of her class from the University of Stellenbosch. I'm sorry, but if the teachers don't get better salaries and better benefits RIGHT NOW, we can just as well say good bye to basic education.

  • bob.slap.5 - 2012-10-25 14:00

    Remember they made their bed and now they reap the fruits of their AA BEE reverse apartheid and whatever else you call it. UNTIL the Government and ALL the people of South Africa relies that we need EACH other there is no future

  • hannah.p.mostert - 2012-10-25 14:00

    My sister-in law has been working in London and Dubai cause the salaries aren't enough for her to set up home here in South Africa, she is born and bred South African and she teachers special needs children.. Why do ANC let someone as good as her and many others go? Because they don't care for their people and they definitely don't want to educate them!

      elspeth.hassall - 2012-10-25 14:31

      hannah... I know so many of our well trained, young, teachers that are over in the UK and want to come home, BUT, know they will not be able to maintain the standard of living, they have in UK, here,at home, because of the merge salaries they will earn here.

  • jaco.human.562 - 2012-10-25 14:00

    This mouth needs a lot of jam. Nominate her for President

  • Michael - 2012-10-25 14:47

    Ramphele, except criticism that we have come to know you for in recent days, what are you doing to add value for learners in this country,? What you are saying is nothing new, the question is what are you as Ramphele going to do about this.

  • Karel du Toit - 2012-10-25 14:50

    she says it as if the ship is still sinking. can any minister proudly say their children are in public schools?

  • makavelithedonkilluminati.shakur - 2012-10-25 16:39

    yep she is definately right and someone should take the fall for this and JZ is sitting there doing nothing about it.

  • zahierm - 2012-10-25 17:18

    Talk about stating the obvious. Here's the challenge...tell us how you'll change it. Crit by all means ... but give the solutions or alternatives to this mess because it is definitely not as simplistic as it's made out to be.

  • parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-25 17:32

    A rapid expansion of education is thus a factor in producing intergroup conflict, especially where the education is of a kind which produces diplomas rather than skills that have significant economic value in the marketplace. Education of a sort useful only for being a clerk, bureaucrat, school teacher--jobs whose numbers are relatively fixed in the short run and politically determined in the long run--tend to increase politicized intergroup strife.

  • mary.hinge.9066 - 2012-10-26 00:12

    This country and the so-called "students" don't value teachers, or education. Teachers are threatened if they don't pass the lazy, no-good pupils. The education standards have been lowered so far, that a matric certificate isn't worth the paper it's written on. Also, the pay is dismal, so why bother going into the teaching profession ? Let the ship sink.

  • zamile.august - 2012-10-29 12:31

    Learners are in need of teachers. Let their voice be heard as they are the ones who suffer whilst non-learners bicker about "experts" and "specialists". There are many problems with education in this country chief of which is the austerity to not spend on it plus health. Learners struggle with the English language which is the medium of instruction and is not vernacular for most of our learners. We need more educators to give our learners the attention that they deserve.