What SA schools should teach: "Teachers should teach academic knowledge, not replace parenting"


We received an influx of comments related to the article 15 things that should be taught in SA's schools. Some insightful and thought-provoking things were touched on.

Here are some of the comments that really stood out:

Parents' role

Many of the readers were adamant that it is a parent's job to teach children the values and skills listed in the article.

The reader adds: "...blunted tools at their disposal ... if teachers didn't have to spend most of their time just trying to get the class to sit still and having to check that homework actually was done ... then there would be time for all that."

This one cracks me up though:

Added suggestions

Some readers suggested other things they feel should be added to the list.

The reader adds: "How to navigate the system at home affairs, and other governmental institutions.
How to open a bank account, apply for a (home car, etc) loan. 
Know your consumer rights.
Labour law and what it means to you.
Which insurance you should consider, and which to avoid.
Planning for your own family, and retirement. 
I'm sure there are more..."

The reader adds: "... to retailer and how the cost of fuel influences these costs. How Escom, SABC, railways, SAA should work. How municipalities work. Rates and taxes and why that is paid. How banks work people seem to think they have lots of money."

Alternative suggestion...

Already being taught 

Some readers feel that these things are already being taught in schools.

The reader adds: "... should  change drastically - it is currently failing as we can clearly see at circuit and district quarterly performance reviews. As for the rest I agree, but good parenting would have covered most of them anyway."

Final note:

The suggestions and concerns in the comments I read are all completely relevant and understandable. I am glad that many people believe these values and skills are important.

But I don't necessarily agree that these things are already being taught in schools, based on my experiences.

Having left high school only a few years ago, I feel that these topics were never emphasised and when they were taught or discussed, it was very brief. I understand that some of these things may be taught in the private schooling sector but for the vast majority of government schools, they are not. 

A lot of the topics listed are indeed covered in Life Orientation, but since the subject is so disregarded, I personally feel it isn't that effective.

If anything, this article was intended as a think piece to get the conversation around the issue going and based on the responses, I am hopeful that more emphasis will be placed on these topics in future.

Are there any comments that you agree or disagree with? Do let us know by emailing us at chatback@Parent24.com and we could publish your comments. Do let us know if you'd like to remain anonymous.

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