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ERIC Number: EJ1150027
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Abstractor: As Provided
Democratisation of Education in South Africa: Issues of Social Justice and the Voice of Learners?
South African Journal of Education, v28 n1 p77-90 2008
The South African Schools Act No. 84 of 1996 mandates that secondary school learners, who are members of the Representative Council for Learners, should be part of school governance through participation in school governing bodies. But they are often not afforded a full opportunity to participate in crucial decisions by the adult members of governing bodies, directly or indirectly. I explore the participation of learners in school governance by means of a literature review and empirical investigation using a qualitative approach. The findings are presented in terms of the role of learners in the school governing bodies, learners' involvement in decision making and in curriculum issues, and the role of governing bodies in promoting democracy in the school and in the wider South African society. Findings suggested that spaces should be created for learners to participate sufficiently in SGBs in order to allow them to exercise their right to participation, thus engaging fruitfully in deliberations dealing with school governance. This would in turn lead to social justice and there would be a great potential for their voice to be heard. They would in turn engage fruitfully in dialogues as they felt included in debates and decision-making processes. Silencing the voice of learners, implicitly or explicitly, means that the issues of social justice and democracy are not taken into consideration in SGBs.
Descriptors: Foreign Countries, Social Justice, Educational Legislation, Secondary School Students, Student Participation, Qualitative Research, Student Role, Participative Decision Making, Democracy, Governing Boards, Governance, Observation, Documentation, Content Analysis, Semi Structured Interviews, Administrator Attitudes, Student Leadership
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: Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A