Voogonderwys [voorligting] waardebepaling en beslag daarvan in 'n Christelike skoolstelsel, met besondere verwysing na die Afrikaanse primêre skool in Transvaal
Scholtz, Izak Petrus
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I. A CONCEPT FORMULATION AND DESCRIPTION OF THE INVESTIGATION In the Christian school the teacher acts as a substitute for the natural parent of the child during school hours. With the parent he is co-responsible before God for the spiritual welfare of each child, although the parent can never get away from his baptismal vow. Substitute parentship gained new significance with the introduction of tutor teaching in Transvaal schools in 1963. Tutor teaching was introduced as the most important component in differentiated education. It supposes scientific individualised education where each child is observed as a person with particular needs, talents and gifts. In a changing world with its many pot-holes, misrepresentations, double standards, etc., not only the child but also the parent seeks solid values and norms. It appears that material prosperity resulted into selfishness and laziness of many people. The responsibility for the education of their children is easily shifted on to others, while mental achievements at the cost of level-headedness are seemingly •the most important aim of many parents. Under these circumstances tutor teaching is becoming more significant. In the primary school where the child receives his primary education, it is essential that each child is known as a whole so that both his possibilities and his limitations can be identified as early as possible, and that immediate attention can be given to them. But tutor education also demands meaningful and scientific conferences with the natural parents, so that parents can be enlightened and informed about their child on the one hand, but also to direct many parents on the other hand. The aim of this investigation is besides establishing the value and place of tutor teaching in the Afrikaans medium primary school in Transvaal, also to determine whether the system of tutor teaching can be used as an aid in national education and national exaltation, and to indicate direction in the light of findings. In this investigation the historical, empirical and questionnaire methods of scientific research have been used. B. HISTORICAL AND FUNDAMENTAL TEACHING AND THE GUIDANCE OF THE TUTOR AND GUIDANCE BY THE TRANSVAAL EDUCATION PLACEMENT OF TUTOR PROGRAMME (INTEGRATION SYSTEM) AS PRESCRIBED DEPARTMENT Since the earliest times parents were responsible for the education of their children. With the progress through the years this task became too comprehensive and schools became necessary to assist parents in the teaching of their children. Parents were not exempted from their educational and teaching responsibility as regards their children, but their task was only supplemented by the school. In the Transvaal the teacher has always acted as supplementary parent of the child during school hours. Supplementary parentship means to be guardian of the child. Guardian or tutor teaching is a natural consequence of supplementary parentship and stresses the necessity of individualised teaching and education. The Transvaal Education Department introduced the system of tutor teaching in 1963. Underlying the success of the whole system, the accent is put on the relationship of confidence that should exist between guardian teacher and child, observation of the child under all circumstances and the necessity to guide and inform the child in respect of all his needs. To know the child as a person who has specific needs, knowledge of his home background is indispensable. Without this knowledge true education is impossible. In the primary school the classroom teacher is also tutor teacher. Without doubt tutor education has tremendous possibilities, but the way in which the system has been implemented in the primary school, gives the impression that it is not really considered important. This impression is confirmed by the fact that instructions in regard to tutor teaching to headmasters of primary schools and rectors of colleges of education, have initially been vague, that even today colleges pay little, if any, attention to theory and practice of tutor teaching and that it has never been the subject of a headmasters' symposium or an orientation course. It was simply expected of headmasters to implement tutor teaching and the guidance programme later on without thorough enlightenment. In addition it was left to head masters themselves to decide whether time should be allocated for tutor periods, whether individual records should be kept for the children and whether house-calls by tutors should be done. PRESENT CULTURAL, POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC SETUP AND VIEWS AND THE NECESSITY FOR NATIONAL EDUCATION The highest calling as regards their children is for the normal Afrikander parent with a Christian-national outlook, to lead them by example and attitude towards God. Coupled herewith the parent will strive to see that his children are well-adapted and useful citizens of their country, and that they should render a life of service in their particular cultural pattern. Such a parent may justly expect that the Christian-national school should assist him in his task. The Afrikaans speaking citizen differs from the English speaking citizen in outlook in their respective cultural patterns. In this chapter certain shortcomings in the Afrikander's Christian-national way of life are pointed out, of which the Christian-religious need is most important. From this need flows forth the alarming number of divorces which leaves ten thousands of children without a father, a mother or a home, in a heartless world. Permissiveness amongst adults takes on bigger dimensions which is also notable in the seemingly approval of pornography. Due to the "missing” father as the person with authority ru1d the mother who has to fill this additional role, there is a negative educational environment in many homes. Children may become emotionally unbalanced, may revolt against authority and may take their refuge to drugs. It appears that adults do not offer the youth ample challenges, which are characteristic of the many children who leave school at an early age. People become more egoistic and human relationships, not only between White and White, but also between White, Black and Coloured, seem to be poor. Where the Afrikander's biggest need is of a religious nature, it appears that the solution lies in the revaluation of the family and its values. The family which is the back bone of a nation, has been discussed for many years, but nothing has been done on large-scale in an organised manner, to guide parents. Against this background and need, the tutor teacher must fulfil his vocation as national educator. He can rely on the assistance of the orthodox parent, but the majority of parents appear to shift their responsibilities on to the teacher, and expect aid and enlightenment from him. For the survival, not only of the Afrikander, but also for that of the entire White population and the other population groups in S.A., it is imperative to start with national education on a comprehensive scale. National education has already been done in countries like America, Canada and Holland. In S.A. tutor teaching can be used as a powerful and efficient instrument in national ennoblement, if the Christian school realises its vocation and if teachers are adequately equipped for their task. Guardians - parents and teachers - should then communicate with each other on a Christian-national basis. D. TUTOR TEACHING IN THE CHRISTIAN SCHOOL AND ITS IMPLICATIONS FOR THE CHILD AND THE GUARDIAN At present the responsibilities of the tutor teacher are exceedingly great and of eternal value. For the teacher, however, it is difficult to fulfil his Christian educational task and indicate direction, because circumstances which could have been eliminated are against him. On the one hand there are parents who expect Christian-national education from the school, but on the other hand, although legislation makes provision for Christian and national education, the same parents have a fatalistic inclination in that they do not demand that Christian-national education is put into practice. Teacher training takes place in a spirit of neutrality without a thorough knowledge of the Christian-Protestant matrimonial and baptismal formulary, the Heidelberg catechism and concordances. Most of the headmasters do not regard the Christian foundation of education and teaching as of fundamental and foremost importance. It appears therefore that not much positive motivation from headmasters to their staff can be expected. It is an extreme pity, even fatal, because true education takes place in the classroom. In a time where the school and its tutors should give true and purposeful guidance to child and parent, one gets the impression that the school gives a little religious instruction, cultivates a little culture, moralises a bit and does a lot of scholastic and sports "training". All these are done with or without the co-operation of parents. Furthermore, it appears as if all the controlling is focused on subject methods and scholastic progress. In defence of the practical positive Christian headmaster can be alleged that he is overburdened with administrative and other duties and cannot therefore pay sufficient attention to tutor education. The result is that his staff may also be unmotivated in respect of the Christian-national aims and they are simply teachers who teach. The family has particular problems due to the "missing" father figure and the mother who in many instances has to fulfil the double burden of bread-winner and educator of the children. The school must realise these conditions because in many cases permissiveness, as well as problems of order and discipline arise from them. Teachers are inclined to meet out uniform punishment for infringements without thorough investigation of the reasons for the infringements and without eliminating those causes. The tutor should also ascertain by means of investigation. what the attitudes and inclinations of parents are in different environments. By doing this he will have a better conception of the child, because the child is a product of his family and environment. By showing real interest in a child, the teacher can where necessary influence parents positively by means of discussions. Tutor teaching and individual teaching con only have meaning when the tutor observes each child in a purposeful, systematic and objective manner in respect of every facet of the child's life. He cannot educate in mass, only individually. To do this, he should put in writing his own observations of the child, as well as all other available information. Some of the most important information can only be obtained from the parents by means of house-call or parent-teacher conferences. E. PARENT-TEACHER CONFERENCES AS AN IMPORTANT MEANS TO TUTOR TEACHING The parent and the teacher are the two biggest allies in the education of the child. Both parent and teacher observe the child. The parent knows his child from birth and this intimate knowledge is very valuable to the tutor. Without conferences, this knowledge is lost to the tutor, to the detriment of the child. Through discussions the teacher gains larger insight of the child and also of the parents' attitudes towards education and teaching, religion, culture, ideals, etc. By showing real interest in each child the parent gains confidence in the school and the parent can be influenced to change detrimental or negative attitudes. Where these attitudes cannot be modified, it may still be possible for the parent to change his attitude towards his child for the good of the child. In this chapter the different kinds of conferences and the approaches, the feelings of children, parents and teachers towards one another - and the records that should be kept, are discussed in detail. Conferences, especially where house-call is unpractical or impossible, are indispensable in tutor teaching. Especially in the Christian school, parent-teacher conferences should form an integral part of the school programme even during school hours. Conferences should not be merely incidental that could be neglected at random. On the contrary, conferences are essential because the school claims that it educates as an individual the entire child. Unfortunately there is no proof that student teachers have any training in the technique of discussions with parents. F. TUTOR TEACHING (GUIDANCE) AS IT IS IMPLEMENTED IN THE AFRIKAANS MEDIUM PRIMARY SCHOOL IN TRANSVAAL The information as included in 273 questionnaires has been tabulated. The majority of headmasters from whom responses have been received, are headmasters of PI, PII, and PIII schools, viz. 252 while 21 are headmasters of PIV schools. As regards qualifications 61,9% of the headmasters have higher qualifications that the prescribed minimum requirements for their posts, 30,8% have post-graduate degrees, while 21,6% are busy with further study. More than 80% of the headmasters are of the opinion that not only can tutor teaching be implemented in the primary school, but that it is in fact necessary. Nearly 94% of the headmasters agree that children's home background must be known. The manner in which schools obtain this information, however, does not suggest that it is obtained scientifically or that data are reliable. The impression is that where information has been obtained, many schools rely on guess-work,. Only 15% of the schools make provision for tutor periods on their time-tables, which vary from 10 to 90 minutes per week. More than 50% of the schools keep records of the children. Although 96% of the headmasters think that parent-teacher conferences are important and that conferences take place at an average of 2,3 per year, there is no indication that individual conferences are conducted. Most of these conferences are of a social nature and consist of parent evenings and/ or displays. The average number of parents per school which is contacted per year in this manner is 62,1% while 55,2% of the parents with children who have scholastic or behaviour problems are reached. The majority of headmasters are not in favour of individual parent-teacher conferences during school hours. Only 7 of the 273 headmasters had tuition in tutor teaching inter alia by self-education. Although tutor teaching was started in 1963, only 88 (2,2%) of the 4 032 teachers at the 273 schools had tuition in tutor teaching. It could have simplified matters for headmasters if a larger number of teachers had had tuition in tutor teaching. Nearly 94% of the headmasters are in favour of in-service-training of teachers in education which could also mean a category increment. It indicates the urgent need of teachers and the probable realization of their inability to cope with matters without thorough tuition in education. Most of the schools, viz. 69,9% have parent-teacher associations. It is an indication that parents participate in school activities. Headmasters could give in their responses their views on any aspect of tutor teaching. This indicated undeniably that most of them realise the importance of tutor teaching and that anxiety exists about the child and many parents. But above all they indicated the urgent need for clear guidance and enlightenment.. This applies to guidance for teachers, parents and children, to an acceptable and standardised tutor record card and the time to be allotted for a tutor period in a full time-table. A reproduction of an experiment with parent-teacher conferences during school hours about progress reports is also given in this chapter. The experiment showed that this type of conference is practical and that the child as well as the parent and teacher benefit from it. It also compels the tutor to give attention to the individual child and to report instructively about him. Questionnaires which were completed by parents and teachers, clearly showed that the child can only benefit when parents and teacher communicate. It, however, demands meaningful and purposeful guidance and motivation of teachers. Via these conferences on progress reports, group conferences can be initiated where parents and teachers can discuss current educational problems. The headmaster should, however, always take the initiative and lead. With the new guidance programme and the necessity of sports and group tutors, the probability of a so-called teachers workshop has been investigated. During these meetings the headmaster and vice-principals, as well as the group tutors discuss problems which emerge from parent-teacher conferences, as well as the needs and problems of the children in general and individually. This is the opportunity where the "top management" of the school can be motivated about all the aims of the Christian-national school, which can have effect with the other teachers. In respect of extramural activities, it has been proved that all the pupils of a school can partake in cultural and sport activities by means of sport and culture periods. A tutor record card is also shown in this chapter. Some of the particulars are obtained from Ed.Lab.cards, while most of the information is derived from intensive observation of the child by the tutor. Where house-call is impossible, the necessary background information of a child can be obtained by means of written questions to parents and by individual conferences. G. TEACHER TRAINING AND OTHER MATTERS AND HOW THEY AFFECT TUTOR TEACHING AND THE CHRISTIAN SCHOOL Legislation provides for Christian and national education in Transvaal schools. Teacher-training has a functional, educational and professional aim. It is doubtful whether college students are trained in the Christian-national way of life. Selection of candidates with regard to their way of life, evaluation by lecturer and headmaster and practical experience in tutor teaching and parent-teacher conferences during practise teaching are matters discussed in this chapter. It appears as if student, teacher and headmaster are not evaluated according to the example they set or to their attitude in regard to the implementation of the Christian and national educational policy. These are matters which closely correlate with tutor teaching because the tutor should carry out the Christian-national way of life. It is alleged that as soon as a large number of women become members of a profession which provides for both sexes, that profession tends to loose prestige in the eyes of the public. It is not implied that this is the case in primary education, but the large number of women makes it difficult for boys to identify themselves with men. Serious attention should be given to the shortage of men in the primary school. It is possible that potential men recruits might see the teaching profession as a woman's profession and as a result they don't feel attracted to the profession. As regards qualifications, more than 70% of all teachers in Transvaal have 3 years and less training as teachers. Most of them are women. Because many married women have to serve the double role of housewife and teacher, they probably do not see their way open for additional study, to the detriment of education and teaching. It seems necessary that the authorities, because they previously found it in order for teachers to suffice with 2 and 3 years training, should provide courses for these teachers to improve their qualifications. From this investigation it was clear that a course in Christian education whereby all the aims of Christian-national education, tutor teaching, parent-teacher conferences, etc. should be implemented and started. There is a serious need for such a course. II. FINDINGS AND ECOMMENDATIONS A number of deductions are made and recommendations are put forth. III. MATTERS THAT REQUIRE FURTHER INVESTIGATION A list of problems encountered in this investigation finalises this chapter.
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