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ERIC Number: EJ1136692
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 61
Religion in Education in South Africa: Was Social Justice Served?
van der Walt, Johannes L.
South African Journal of Education, v31 n3 p381-393 2011
The promulgation of South African policy regarding the place of religion in public education was delayed until 2003, after a lively debate. The National Policy on Religion in Education effectively banned confessional, sectarian religion from public schools, but allowed for the teaching of Religion Studies as an academic subject and for religious observances, on condition that these were offered in a fair and equitable manner. Given the nature of the debate around religion and education in South Africa, it can be asked whether the state has served social justice through this Policy. A discussion of human rights, social justice, morality and the role of the state leads to the conclusion that although the state never actually mentioned the philosophical or moral driving forces behind the Policy, it is most likely that it applied tenets of secularism, value-plurality, pragmatic political expediency and modus "Vivendi." This was probably the best route for the state to follow considering how, in the past, education suffered from the over-emphasis of divisive factors. Revised policy could arguably take cognisance of how actors on the ground dealt with this conundrum.
Descriptors: Foreign Countries, Social Justice, Religion, Civil Rights, State Church Separation, Role of Education, Educational Practices, Educational Policy, Public Education, Public Schools
Education Association of South Africa. University of Pretoria, Centre for the Study of Resilience, Level 3, Groenkloof Student Centre, Department of Educational Psychology, Faculty of Education, George Storrar Road and Lleyds Street, Pretoria 0001, South Africa. Tel: +27-12-420-5798; Fax: +27-12-420-5511; Web site: http://www.sajournalofeducation.co.za/index.php/saje/index
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa