Die beheer oor Blanke–onderwys in Suid–Afrika in histories–pedagogiese perspektief
Steyn, Hendrik Johannes
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The purpose of this study is to enlighten: • the part of the government and parents in the control of education, • the part of the central government and the provinces in the control of education (the question of divided educational control) • and the development of the structures of educational control in a historical perspective. In dealing with these questions the primary and secondary education is mainly emphasized. Pre-primary and tertiary education is only mentioned when the question of divided control of education is discussed. The historical descriptive method was used to present the data in the field of study from 1652-1979. The fundamentals of the present relationship between the government and the parents concerning the control of education had already been formed since 1652 to 1795 in the Cape of Good Hope. Thus in chapter 2 the control of education is described to show how there was a close contact between the government, the church and the parents (during this period). One can distinguish but never isolate the different parts played by each of the above mentioned. This was the practice in the Netherlands before 1652 and continued as such in the Cape. At the Cape however the parents were also given a part in the control of education as the inhabited areas were vast and widely spread. The government and the church could not effectively control the education and it was necessary to involve the parents. De Mist continued on these foundations concerning the control of education when formulating, the School Order of 1804. Because of his teaching aim to educate children for citizenship De Mist wanted to centralise all control under the authority of the government. The vastness of the community prevented the government from having effective control of the education. De Mist had to make use of the help of parents in the form of local education control bodies to ensure effective control. This was in line with the tradition to give the parents a say in the education of their children which was formed over a period of 150 years. After the second annexation of the Cape Colony in 1800 by Britain, the British government tried until the late forties of the previous century to centralize the control of the schools by giving all control to the government. The centralisation was necessary because the British government wanted to ensure that their educational aim, namely the Anglicisation of the school going population, would be successful. Chapter 3 describes how the British government had to yield to the pressure of the population in the Cape Colony. This was caused by the strong tradition of parental control in the education. The result was that since 1850 the local community and parents were a greater say in the matters concerning the control of education. This matter culminated in the School Board Act of 1905 where the local community had a greater say through school boards and parents through school committees in the control of education. The central control over education was in the hands of the government, while the executive authority was given to the Department of Education. The greatest part of educational control was in the hands of the central body of control because all developments and decisions as far as education was concerned, had to be approved by the central educational authority. Chapter 4 describes how the control of education in the Transvaal became independent of the other states, namely the Cape Colony, the Orange Free State and Natal during 1838 to 1910. During the period the control of education was further decentralised according to the CNE principle. The local bodies of control were responsible for the general welfare of the school. They also had a say in the appointment of teachers as they had to recommend the teachers to the Department of Education. This shows that although the local bodies of control had an important part in the control of education, the main control lay with the central bodies of control the government and the Department of Education. The superintendent of Education was the main permanent executive educational official. During the period (1877-1881 and 1900-1906) when the Transvaal was under direct government of Britain, the British tried to centralise the control of education under the head of the state. This was done to try and ensure that the educational aim of Anglicising the population would be carried out. These efforts of the British government were not successful because the parents used the CNE principle to have a part in the control of education. On account of this Act 25 of 1907 (the Smuts Act) provided for school boards and school committees. The ultimate responsibility was still in the hands of the central bodies of control, namely the government and the Department of Education with the Director of Education as the main permanent executive educational official. The development of the control of education in Transvaal from 1838 to 1910 correlated to a large extent with that in the Orange Free State during the same period. Chapter 5 shows that the final control of education during the republican period was in the hands of the central controlling bodies. The parents had an important part in the control of education. Likewise the local controlling bodies recommended teachers for teaching posts to the Department .of Education. During the time of the British domination of the Orange Free State the British tried, as they had in Transvaal, to centralise the education under the government. The parents and local community only had advisory power. The greater part of the local population resented this and during the period of Responsible Selfgovernment the government was compelled to give the parents an important part in the control of education. This was accomplished by Act 35 of 1908 (the Hertzog Act) when school boards, school committees and boards of control were established. The final authority on all things concerning the education still lay with the government with the Director of Education, having executive power, as head of the Department of Education. From the preceding facts it can be seen that the development of educational control in the Cape Colony, Transvaal and the Orange Free State correlated to a great extent -each of the control systems provided for the parents to have a say in the control of education, although it was under supervision of the central government. In chapter 6 it is shown that the control of education in Natal from 1838 to 1910 followed its own line of development. After Natal had been annexed by the British Empire the control of education was centralised under the authority of the state to ensure that the Anglicisation in education would successfully be accomplished. The Dutch speaking people in Natal were in the minority and thus their resentment against centralised control did not succeed. Until 1910 the final say on matters concerning education lay with the government. The Department of Education was responsible for the execution of the educational policy. Sporadically parents tried to establish local bodies of control, but they were only advisory and were not supported by the central authority. These bodies thus didn't really have much effect. On 31 May 1910 the four colonies of the British Empire Cape Colony, Transvaal, Orange Free State and Natal -were united as the Union of South Africa. The main reasons for the unification were to stimulate the economy and to ensure a united approach to mutual problems. The expectation was tha.t the education would benefit this approach and be brought under the jurisdiction of the central educational authority. By this time each of the four colonies had formed their own tradition regarding education and they were not prepared to have their interests subjected to the central government. The Colony of Natal was especially afraid that its interests would be lost in the greater whole. Therefore the control of education was divided among the Departments of Education of the four provinces and the Union Department of Education. In chapter 7 it is shown how article 85 (iii) of the "Zuid-Afrikawet" allowed for a horizontal division of educational control. All tertiary education was under the jurisdiction of the Union Department of Education while all secondary and primary education was under the jurisdiction of the provinces. In spite of this, the control of education was divided vertically within the first two decades after unification. According to this division the Union Department of Education received jurisdiction over tertiary education, professionally directed and special education on secondary level as well as over special education on primary level. At the same time the various provincial Departments of Education had jurisdiction over tertiary education given at the Colleges of Education, and at ordinary and special secondary and primary schools. This division prevailed until 1967. During the period from 1910 to 1967 there was no national educational policy. Thus in chapter 8 a description of how each of the four provinces continued to manage their control of provincial education is given. Since the different provinces each had its own educational system the relationship between the parents and provincial educational authorities differed from province to province. There were certain similarities in the organization and regulations of the Cape Province, Transvaal and the Orange Free State. In these provinces the final say over education lay with the provincial education authorities. An important part of the control of education was given to the parents however. By means of the local bodies of control the parents could see to the general welfare of the school which their children attended. The parents could also recommend the teachers to be appointed. In Natal the control of education was centralised under the provincial authority and the Department of Education. The parents obtained a part in the control of education by means of the local bodies of control, but these bodies of control were only there in an advisory capacity. These parents had no assurance that their recommendations would be acted on. The vertical division of education hampered a comprehensive differentiated educational system. Chapter 9 describes how in 1967 measures were taken to resolve the problem of divided educational control. By means of the Act on the National Education Policy, 1967 and the Act on the Educational Services, 1967 all tertiary education was placed under the authority of the Department of National Education while all pre-tertiary education, excluding special education, was placed under the authority of the provinces. The Minister of National Education was appointed to form a national education policy in accordance with the principles formulated by the Act on the National Education Policy. The present relationship between the various educational authorities and the parents concerning the control of education is also discussed in chapter 9. In all four the provinces the final say on all educational matters lies with the departments of education. By means of legislation the parents are legally assigned a part in the control of education, but in practice less and less of this is implemented. The reason for this is the vast advance in educational matters and the fact that education is fully financed by the government. As the present state of educational control shows certain shortcomings, certain proposals to improve the system of educational control in South Africa are suggested in chapter 10. Concerning the relationship between the central government and the provinces regarding the control of education it is suggested that the control must be centralised to a greater extent. This suggestion is made because the foreign threat to the country can only be opposed by a national feeling of unity. Such a national feeling of unity can only be formed through education when the education is controlled by a central authority. Another advantage of centralisation is that the present duplication in the education system, with its detrimental financial results, can be corrected. According to this suggestion both the forming as well as the implementing of the education policy must be the responsibility of a central education authority. The planning sections of the present departments of education must also be placed under the central education authority. The implementing of the education policy may be decentralised to the provincial departments of education. This means that the provincial departments of education should be responsible for inspection and also for certain administrative duties. Only through implementing the above suggestions can a national education system for the Whites become a reality. As the implementing of the above proposals will mean the discarding of school boards in Transvaal and the Cape Province, it is suggested that the parents be given a part in educational control through school committees or boards of control. It is further suggested that the parents must have a direct connection with the central education authority. Regional boards ought to be chosen from members of the school committees. The regional boards must meet regularly with members of the central education authority to pose the viewpoints of the parent society to the central education authority. The central education authority can use these meetings to enlighten the boards of control as to their responsibilities. Hereby a good understanding can be established between the parent society and the education authorities which can only be to the benefit of the education and upbringing of the pupils. In order to implement some of these proposals successfully it is essential that the changes must be brought about gradually.
- Education