House of Assembly: Vol3 - THURSDAY 2 MAY 1985
announced that the vacancy in the electoral division of Newton Park had been filled with effect from 1 May 1985 by the election of Mr Izak Louw.
Mr I Louw, introduced by Mr P J Clase and Mr J J Niemann, made and subscribed the oath and took his seat.
Vote No 15—“Education and Training”:
Mr Chairman, before I make a few observations in connection with the general areas covered by the policy objectives which this department and I have in this extremely important sphere of the promotion of Black education, I should first like to convey my sincere thanks to the hon the Deputy Minister of Co-operation and of Education, and also to the Director-General and his staff for the loyal way in which they have during the past year—and in particular during the past few months—carried out the task of this department. I should like to pay tribute to the teaching staff of the Department of Education and Training, who faithfully discharged their duties, frequently under very difficult, even provocative and dangerous circumstances. I also want to express thanks for the tact and the diplomacy which they displayed under difficult circumstances in order to defuse situations so that it was possible to ensure that the process of education continued to function.
I tender these thanks of mine not only to the teachers in the schools, but also to the officials and to everyone in the department who made an indispensable contribution in this connection, sometimes under extremely heavy pressure of difficult circumstances, and also under the pressure of time.
On this occasion I want to refer to the Deputy Director-General of the department, Mr Nienaber, who will be retiring on pension soon. I should like to convey to him my thanks for the long career of service which he has dedicated to education. Initially he served in the Free State Education Department, but he devoted most of his career to the Department of Education and Training, in the interests of the education of Black people in this country. He achieved results which will be remembered long after he has left.
†Mr Chairman, I should also like to express my delight at the presence here today of three representatives of the Council of Education and Training, the council representing the cream of Black educational leadership as the policy advisory body to the department and to me personally. I am referring now to the Deputy Chairman, Dr S K Matseke, executive member Mr S Zwane and the General Secretary, Mr S W Seboni.
I believe it is incumbent upon me to give hon members of this House some indication of the main targets which this department is trying to achieve amidst difficult and trying circumstances. I have compiled a statement which, I am afraid, it will not be possible to deal with in detail here but I do wish to emphasize the most prominent aspects and the statement will also be made available to hon members should they want to take note of further aspects of it.
As Minister entrusted with the responsibility for this critically important portfolio I feel it is incumbent upon me to make known my perception of the challenges as I see them at this stage and to state some policy objectives and targets for the immediate future. I want to emphasize that I base this statement on insights gathered during the course of extensive consultations with the executives of the Council for Education and Training, of the African Teachers’ Association and of the Association of Inspectors in the republic, which represents the Black inspectors of the department, as well as with several other delegations representing local and regional viewpoints, consultations in which I have had the benefit of the assistance of the hon the Deputy Minister.
There are five vitally important statements of Government policy which have already intimately affected education, especially for the Blacks, and which will continue to influence its future development. Let me briefly mention these.
The Government’s White Paper on the Wiehahn Report, 1980, had an important impact in respect of technical education for Blacks. The new Education and Training Act, 1979, extended the scope and content of the education activity for Black communities. The Government’s White Paper on the Provision of Education, 1983, based on the De Lange Report, can be regarded as a blueprint for educational reform in South Africa. I also refer to the Government’s repeated, firmly stated commitment to provide equal educational opportunities for all inhabitants and communities of the country.
Last year Parliament passed the National Policy for General Education Affairs Act which led to the creation of a completely newly conceived Ministry and Department of National Education which determine and monitor national education policy for all departments of education for all population groups.
The creation of a Ministry and a Department of National Education determining national education policy and serving the executive departments of education for all population groups, fulfils the strongly expressed need for one co-ordinating Ministry and department to determine general education policy on a national level for all groups.
The facets outlined above are but a few indicators of the dynamic and ongoing nature of education development and represent important milestones in the development of education policy. I should like to survey this vast field with regard to which I should like to indicate some of our aims and goals under five main headings or areas. I should like to deal firstly with the logistics of education and I want to emphasize particularly how this is affected by the problem of growing numbers.
There is one independent demographic factor that vitally affects the provision of education for Black people, and this is the explosion in enrolment at all educational institutions. In the whole of Southern Africa the total annual increase in enrolment of Black pupils is of the order of 250 000 pupils. The departments of education responsible for Black pupils in Southern Africa are faced with the formidable task of providing education for approximately 6 million pupils of whom just over 4 million are within the borders of the Republic of South Africa, and also 15 million adults, in order to prepare them to play a meaningful role in our modernized technological society, because I consider adult education in the case of particularly the Black communities as much a part of the total education task as in the education of pupils.
The growth in numbers reflects a rapid change from elitist education available to a select few to an expanding education available to the masses.
There are some compounding factors affecting this problem of logistics. Firstly there are existing backlogs in the educational service for Black communities, backlogs which are due largely to very high growth rates, growth rates with which any education system would find it almost impossible to cope.
There are furthermore the rising cost of education which are all the more under pressure because of the aim of attaining parity with education expenditure for older, well-established and numerically stable education departments. These costs are also under pressure because of the need to meet the requirements of rapidly changing societies.
There is also the need for a balance between general formative academic education on the one hand and general formative vocational education on the other hand. There is also the need for a greater diversification of courses offered in the schools in order better to cater for the various sciences and opportunities available to the pupils.
There is a need for more and adequately qualified and experienced teachers and professional staff to meet the requirements of differentiated education. There is the fact of the unacceptably high failure rate in all standards, which is due to some of the factors already mentioned and also to other socioeconomic and cultural factors, amongst which the language medium used in the course of instruction is of vital importance and has a considerable effect. The situation is also compounded by boycotts which not only disrupt the school careers of thousands of pupils but also retard progress in the planned provision of education.
Let me suggest some of the steps to be taken in this area of struggling with the problem of increasing numbers. First of all, there is the goal of maintaining, and if possible accelerating, the present realization of intermediate and ultimate targets against a fixed time schedule aimed at, firstly, sustaining the successful programme of catching upon existing backlogs and, secondly, providing adequately for increasing enrolments with respect to the improvement of both the teacher-pupil and pupil-classroom ratios. Furthermore, there is the need for increasing the production of teachers, for example by establishing, as we have decided to do, a number of smaller colleges throughout the country without necessarily providing residential facilities but having them focus primarily on the day-student population. There is the importance of improving career opportunities for Black people in education and especially—and I should like to emphasize my commitment to this—accelerating the programme of upward mobility for Black educationists in the education decision-making hierarchy of the department. Then there is the goal of bringing down the failure rate in all standards to ensure a more even flow of pupils through the school system.
The second broad area I should like to deal with concerns the special needs that have to be catered for in this particular department, needs which are brought about particularly by the realities of development. There are special needs still to be catered for at this stage in the provision of education for Black children. Education is one means of assisting Black children in making a transition at different levels from traditional cultures to the highly competitive technoculture of modern society. Socio-economic factors and general levels of development of a community are of course co-determinants which set the general level of achievement at which the children can be expected to perform. Although formal school education can never be a substitute for parental upbringing, it is the duty of the formal education system to identify and compensate as far as possible for such handicaps as arise from lower development levels in the community and in the parental homes.
Some of the steps to be taken in this area are, first, that there should be concentration not only on formal education but also on the development of non-formal and informal education in accordance with the recommendations of the De Lange Report but also of the important report of the Science Committee of the President’s Council which was brought out at the beginning of last year. Furthermore, there should be a large increase in the provision of pre-primary education in order to improve the school readiness of children. It is an important goal to introduce a bridging period between the home and the formal school. We also acknowledge that proper guidance, including vocational guidance, is a dire need in the schools and that for this purpose the collaboration of the private sector should be sought. We also acknowledge the need to increase the application of educational technology in formal, non-formal and informal education by the use of, for instance, computers, video-tapes, radio and television. The department also aims at increasing its motivation courses for pupils and for teachers, courses aimed at boosting their confidence and establishing a healthy self-image, which is absolutely essential as a psychological basis for successful education.
In the third place I should like to deal broadly with professional considerations which are affected by the whole challenge of improving the quality of education.
The standards set for all education departments are the same in terms of syllabuses prescribed and the level of the final examinations at Std 10, but it is quite clear that the quality of teaching and education is lagging behind in many of our schools for various reasons. I should emphasize that a high percentage of schools are in fact maintaining a high level of performance, and are producing very satisfactory results in the final examination. Unfortunately, the majority of the schools do not perform so well. It has become obvious that the provision of similar staffing, facilities and equipment does not necessarily guarantee similar results. Therefore, there must obviously be other factors influencing the standard and the general level of achievement at a given school. These factors are of a varied and complex nature and have to be identified and addressed.
Let me suggest some of the prerequisites for improving the quality of education. Firstly, we should ensure the availability of physical facilities which include apparatus, education aids and also library material. A general high level of qualification of teachers is essential. However, effective education can only take place in an atmosphere of discipline and orderliness. Politically inspired boycotts and disruptions have a demoralizing effect on pupils, teachers and communities at large, and cause irreparable damage to the whole educational process. We also acknowledge that the management of a school or any educational institution is of vital importance, and therefore we concentrate on improving the managerial skills of inspectors, principals, teachers and administrative staff by means of special courses.
Another important goal is the successful introduction of the new communication structures which we announced last year, and which aim at establishing effective communication among parents, pupils, teachers and the authorities. We acknowledge the need to foster greater and more effective community involvement through existing structures, but also through the introduction of additional forums for liaison and co-operation which could negotiate especially by means of the communication structures I have just suggested. The department has also identified a number of areas in which educational services can be optimized by working out national plans at macro level for all the different facets. This planning will be done with the full co-operation of the leaders of the Black teaching profession and inspectorate from the outset.
In the fourth place, I should like to emphasize the importance of human relations and attitudes in the successful expansion of Black education. Positive attitudes and healthy relationships among all parties directly or indirectly involved in education are prerequisites for effective and successful education. I suggest that there should be a general acceptance of the commitment of the Department of Education and Training to offer the best possible education aimed at the full realization of the potential of every individual. Some of the steps to be taken in this regard are: Firstly, increasing public and media awareness of the tasks, the responsibilities and the challenges in this field, but also an awareness of the parameters within which this task has to be performed, and to give due credit for positive progress and developments. I think it is essential for good human relations and attitudes that recognition should be given to the visible manifestations of the department’s commitment to establish equal educational opportunities to which the Government has also committed itself, and to realize fully the potential of every individual in the interests of the development of the country and all its communities.
In this regard—and this is an important point I want to make—the depoliticization of Black education must be promoted by meeting, through negotiation, the reasonable political aspirations of Black people in South Africa by implementing the principle enunciated more than once by the State President in several debates this year that every community is entitled to participate in political decision-making which affects its interests and its future. The political area is not completely separate from the educational area, and therefore we have to acknowledge that progress in the field of political reform is of direct importance to stable progress in educational reform.
Another step in this regard is to obtain the co-operation of the organized teaching profession in establishing professional pride, a professional code of conduct and an esprit de corps among teachers. It is, however, also important that an awareness should be created among all concerned of the importance of individual responsibility in education on the part of parents, teachers and pupils. Education is not a process in which people simply receive results passively, but it is a process in which they have to co-operate and contribute actively, and in which they have to take initiatives.
It is also our goal to bring about the recognition of the fact that the department, in partnership with parents and teachers, remains the responsible authority for decisions on and the execution of education. The department cannot allow pupils or outsiders to prescribe to it or to the schools, although we acknowledge through the introduction of the necessary communication structures that pupils have a valid right to be listened to and to have an opportunity of presenting their views to the education authorities to be taken seriously.
Finally there is the area of economic considerations, because in the final analysis education has to be an economically viable investment in order to be affordable. It must yield its dividends in terms of human happiness and satisfaction, opportunity, economic welfare and national prosperity in order to be a successful venture. Education is a public venture. The State is one of the partners and is investing heavily. Therefore the results should justify the investment.
I also acknowledge the principle that the State, the individual parent, society and the private sector all share the responsibility for education in different ways.
I should also like to mention that a formula is being developed under the guidance of the hon the Minister of National Education to ensure eventual parity in educational services and equal financial provision among the different education departments. Such a formula will also provide for the elimination of backlogs in a planned and systematic way, but it must be accepted that massive increases in expenditure are not of themselves an instant solution, and that natural evolutionary processes in education cannot be speeded up beyond certain limits lest such pressure lead to waste and unproductive application of human and financial resources.
Some of the needs that we consider in this regard and which we identify as our goals, include the following: The need for better information—especially for parents—regarding the actual training and career opportunities open to their children after completing their school careers. Then there is also the need to diminish the emphasis on “general” education and to lead pupils towards more realistic and more career-oriented subject choices. This emphasizes the need for greater diversification in education. In this way I am sure we can also make a meaningful contribution to lower the failure and drop-out rates and to increase the “holding power” of schools up to Std 10 level.
We also acknowledge the need for closer contact and co-operation between the private and public sectors in determining manpower needs and training requirements. I should like to pay tribute to the way in which the private sector has been forthcoming in this regard and has generally provided assistance to Black schools.
There is also the need to eliminate erroneous and negative perceptions regarding the status of artisans, ie blue collar versus white collar occupations.
In conclusion I should like to say that it is essential that any evaluation of the present position in education for Blacks, as well as future development, should be made objectively with due consideration to the circumstances and parameters within which this task has to be performed.
There are no easy instant solutions to circumvent evolutionary processes which apply to all other education departments locally and abroad. However, I acknowledge and my department acknowledges that these processes can be—and must be—speeded up, within reasonable limits, if all the parties involved co-operate and accept the Government’s commitment to provide equal education opportunities for all population groups.
Many of the steps outlined in this broad statement are already in advanced stages of planning or implementation. In the final analysis, however, the responsibility rests with every community and every individual to make the best possible use of the already considerable and rapidly developing facilities and education opportunities. We have a long road ahead of us. There are many defects and there are many shortcomings in Black education. That much we acknowledge; and I hope that I have indicated how we have identified them and also how we have tried to address them. We also emphasize, however, that education is a partnership between the State—through the department providing education—and the community, especially the parents, children and teachers. I sincerely trust that in this way we shall make meaningful progress in the year ahead, and take a considerable step forward towards achieving the goal of equal education opportunities for Black communities in South Africa.
Mr Chairman, may I request the privilege of the half-hour?
Mr Chairman, at the outset may I associate my party with the good wishes to Mr Nienaber on his forthcoming retirement. We wish him well in the years ahead. I would also like to associate my party with the welcome the hon the Minister extended to the three representatives of the Council of Education and Training.
The hon the Minister has made a lengthy and important statement of policy today, and I must say that we welcome the fact that he has done so. I think it sets out in detail the attitude of his department and himself. I must say in addition that we agree with a great deal of it—if not most of it. Still, there are of course points of difference.
I would like to identify just two things because there are many aspects I will cover during the course of my speech. One thing that pleases me particularly is the department’s commitment to “offer the best possible education aimed at the full realization of the potential of every individual”. I think that, because of economic and other problems, people sometimes look upon individuals in education as being prepared to produce wealth for the country, but I think that one has to achieve a balance and so I welcome the department’s commitment.
It is, however, in the very next paragraph in regard to the steps being taken that I think one of the problems arises, although it is not specifically defined here. He talks about “increasing public and media awareness of the tasks, responsibilities and challenges”—and this is all fine—and then he talks about “an awareness of the parameters within which this task has to be performed”. In that particular context, I am not exactly sure what parameters he is talking about. However, I think he is aware that in this whole document he is talking in terms of a racially defined education department. I certainly do not think that merely removing racial definitions of education departments or even having a form of integrated education is a panacea which is going to solve all our education problems overnight. I do believe, however, that for as long as one defines one’s education on a racial basis, one is trying to tackle the problems with one arm tied behind one’s back.
I would like to congratulate the hon the Minister and the hon the Deputy Minister on their appointment and I wish them both well in the years ahead in the tasks that they have to handle. I hope that one of the things they will achieve in the near future is to ensure that more time is made available for discussions on Votes so that we can have more time to debate Black education among many other things.
The annual report that we have received is once again a comprehensive and useful document, and I would like to thank the department for letting us have it in good time because this gave us a chance to study it. I am concerned, however, that it again virtually ignores boycotts and unrest. There is a passing reference, under the heading “Introduction” to political disturbances being disruptive but I do think further information would be relevant. In a question in this House we asked how many schools and pupils had been affected by disturbances last year and the hon the Minister told us that it was not possible to determine how many schools and children had been affected in some other way, but that 130 schools and the educational programmes of 113 990 pupils had been seriously disrupted. In total I believe between a quarter and three-quarters of a million pupils were affected last year by disturbances of one sort or another. I believe that deserves some authoritative comment, some facts and figures in the report, and more than a passing reference. The absence of any reference to the effect that the disturbances had on the educational programme does not enhance the credibility of the report in respect of its completeness.
The outstanding feature of Black education in the past year has been the acute crisis that has developed, verging on the brink of collapse in some areas. There are many causes and festering problems at the educational level. Few of these are new, but they remain causes of considerable dissatisfaction. Here I am thinking of things such as excessive corporal punishment; age limit restriction, although they are seldom applied; lack of democratic representation; sexual harassment; shortages of textbooks; inferior education; and poor examination results.
However, there are deeper and more widespread causes of the problems in Black education. Failure to recognize and deal with them will render all attempts at conflict management in the schools and universities ineffective. The Centre for Applied Social Studies at the University of Natal has just published a report, called School Boycotts 1984: The Crisis in African Education by researcher Monica Bot. I wish to quote some excerpts because it is up to date and I think it is authoritative:
And, of course, in many instances in the first quarter of this year as well. Ms Bot goes on to say;
The conclusion that Ms Bot comes to is:
I am pleased that, to a limited extent, the hon the Minister made reference to that earlier this afternoon.
This Vote deals essentially with the educational aspects although one cannot lose sight of the background. Therefore, I should like to look at some of the educational factors involved. Last year I described the then hon the Minister’s opening comments as “rather like a breath of fresh air”. I believed that he was sincere, and I believe equally that the new hon Minister and his Deputy Minister are also sincere. However, fine words and good intentions are not enough. Even positive action and substantial improvements will be insufficient if they fail to come to grips with the magnitude and urgency of the problems in Black education.
The question is not whether the Government is doing anything to improve Black education; it is whether the Government is doing enough or at least everything that it could and should be doing. The answer in my view is obviously: “No, it is not.”
We are today reaping the bitter harvest of decades of neglect in Black education. The acute shortage of suitably qualified teachers and the millions of disillusioned people in their twenties and thirties in our Black townships are just two examples of the results of neglect by NP Governments.
Last year I gave what I believed to be the reasons for many of the problems. Each of those reasons remains as valid today as it was then. They are: Polarization caused by the new Constitution—I believe the hon the Minister recently conceded this in an interview. There are also the poor matric results. In 1984 we had the fifth successive year in which about half of the pupils failed their matric exams. In the schools of the department 53% of the pupils passed as against 52% the previous year, but these figures represent only 7 808 pupils as against 10 348; that is a 25% drop. I am aware that many of the people who entered did not write the exam and that this is the reason for the drop, but the fact remains that one has produced 25% fewer successful matriculants than in the previous year.
The inequalities remain as glaring as ever. Departmental inefficiencies occur. Every year there appears to be confusion over the publication date of the matric exam results and they appear in an unsatisfactory manner. Textbook shortages is another example of departmental inefficiency and these factors destroy confidence in the department.
Then there is the question of communication breakdown. The slow implementation of the plans revealed in the 1984 Vote in May last year by the hon the Minister has been a disaster because it may be too late for many of these plans to be effective. In many instances the Government now does not know who to talk to. It is interesting that at a time when somebody like Mrs Molly Blackburn, MPC, is being vilified by the Government, TV, etc, members of Government departments get hold of her when they want to establish channels of communication. [Interjections.] They ask her to try to help them establish some channels of communication. [Interjections.]
A good example is the Thabo High School in Soweto where there was a dispute over the scripts of 47 pupils. I would like to congratulate the hon the Minister and his department on their concern in allowing those scripts to be independently sighted. The people who viewed them independently came to the same conclusion as the department. I feel such a step helps to establish confidence and I congratulate them on having done that.
Despite the efforts of the department I fear that Black education is on a dangerous downward spiral at present. Dramatic gestures, both symbolic and practical, are needed to halt this trend. Blacks must be given the sort of education they want, not a system of education that the nationalist Government has decided they are going to be given. It is essential that the image of Black education be improved; that it be brought out of its segregated little corner and be treated as a matter of national concern.
There is an urgent need for a national high-level conference of people of all races to consider how to improve Black education as rapidly as possible. A top priority would be to establish how best the skills of educationists in other groups can be mobilized to improve substantially the quality of Black education in a way that is acceptable to all concerned.
Education must be freed from its apartheid shackles, and all available physical and human resources must be used to best effect. South Africa cannot afford to have surplus, underutilized and discarded teachers, schools and teacher training colleges for Whites while other racial groups have a desperate need for all the help they can get.
A second priority would be to establish better communications with pupils, teachers, parents and whole communities. Last year Bishop Tutu was praised by the hon the Minister for his constructive contribution. Leaders of his calibre, recognized by Blacks as such, must be brought into the essential process of renewal in Black education.
On the practical level it disturbs me that the Government often says what it is doing but seldom, if ever, explains whether shortages or deficiencies are being eliminated or not. Take classrooms as an example. In 1984, 3 895 new classrooms were built. As at March that year the shortage of classrooms was 5 775, and I should like the hon the Minister to tell us when he replies whether that shortage is growing or shrinking and when it is scheduled to be eliminated.
I believe there is a teacher shortage of 7 500. From 1983 to 1984 there was an increase of 1 621 teachers, but is the gap closing or, again, is the shortage growing? When one comes to pupil/teacher ratios, the position has in fact deteriorated in secondary schools. In 1983 the ratio was 31,8%, while in 1984 it was 32,8%. The ratio is getting worse and again I should like to know what the department’s targets are with regard to time as well as eventual numbers. The same questions arise about targets and programmes for targets with regard to expenditure patterns, the issuing of free books, etc.
We know that a great deal is being done on the practical level, but is it enough to resolve or at least substantially alleviate the problems confronting Black education? If not—and I suspect this to be the case—the Government is looking for trouble even more serious than it is faced with at present.
The Cape Peninsula schools illustrate many of the problems, including the lack of a sense of urgency and the priority which is given to ideology over educational needs. In October last year officials requested additional classrooms. Eventually, only on 7 February 1985, classrooms were ordered. Why was no accommodation available? The hon the Minister said it was due to the unforseen influx of pupils and because townships were frozen. As a result, 500 pupils were unable to obtain admission until 3 April to 29 April 1985. Sir, this is an example of the sort of thing I am talking about, where a lack of urgency and ideological predominance bedevils our system.
Mr Chairman, at least we have heard a different sound from the benches of the official opposition this year. The hon member for Cape Town Gardens did not repeat the old theme of his argument for one department but he did argue for the abolition of separate schools and separate facilities. I shall return to this thought in a while.
I appreciate the hon member’s interest in education and his knowledge acquired through reading and research. Nevertheless I have no great appreciation for his deeper understanding of the education of Black pupils. The hon member for Cape Town Gardens has no comprehension of the fact that the Black child has to move from his known world of experience and familiar milieu to a world where he has to make a living for himself. These two environments differ fundamentally. The Black child is a commuter between two cultures and the great, challenging and lofty task of this department is to take that child and prepare and equip him for the world in which he has to make a living, namely the sophisticated Western economy with its requirements. We who have been involved in education, who have worked and sweated there, know that even to a vast majority of White children it is a great problem to bridge that phase of adjustment. I wish to mention only a single example. A White child coming from rural areas has a great problem in adapting when he moves to an urban complex or educational institutions in urban complexes; this applies even more to the Black child—it is simply a fact.
In saying this, however, we are not denigrating the background and culture of the Black person and that Black child. We wish him to retain the appreciation of his cultural treasures; they are his natural wealth which accompanies him throughout life. The language and instruments of the West are instruments towards his daily life. His cultural wealth is not only an instrument, however, it is his life. He lives on it, sings and writes about it and we should not deprive him of it. We cannot prune the national culture from the child of a people because then one turns him into an artificial person; then one deprives him of a certain depth and happiness he has to carry throughout his life.
The hon member for Cape Town Gardens expressed his appreciation of the work of the department but also uttered a great deal of criticism in consequence of the fact that shortcomings remained here and there. I say, however, we have an excellent department and a wise, grey-haired Minister—an experienced educationist. We also have a very young Deputy Minister who is full of drive and vigour; he pulses with the rhythmic culture of our youth. We also have bright and capable departmental heads with expertise in their ranks. I am therefore not concerned about the activities of this team; I know this department will fare well.
When we view the challenge and the task this department has to accomplish, we say it is phenomenal. The growth in educational numbers of this department is estimated roughly at 50 000 pupils a year. We also have to take the requirements of this numerical growth into consideration; at an average of approximately 830 pupils a school, it requires 60 new schools a year. If one analyses this figure in further detail, it means 10 completed classrooms with all the accompanying equipment every working day of every year. That is the challenge facing us. Ten completed classrooms have to be delivered every day to satisfy the figure of increase. Add to this the teaching staff with experienced principals who have to be available to guide education.
In this respect I cannot omit thanking our farmers in the rural areas and our industrialists for the provision of schools and staff to support the department in this grand task.
The hon member for Cape Town Gardens referred to the failures that appear along the way such as the disappointing matriculation results. I should like to mention only one figure in this regard. In 1975 Black matriculants numbered 8 000; in 1983 the figure was 72 000. If we express the increase percentagewise it is phenomenal. With this development in mind, it is a compliment to the department and the Ministry which have to deal with this increase. It is an exceedingly great task to provide the physical facilities and train and make staff available so tensions are to be expected.
As early as the sixties, Marcuse, a communist writer, prescribed to the universities and colleges of Europe, including the University of France, that the youth should be the spearhead in any attempt to destabilize the Government. We should not lose sight of this either. The youth have to be the spearhead and we are experiencing this here. Elementally that youth has to be used—we have seen it on our television screens—to destabilize because the youth is less vulnerable than the adult; the youth is less accountable than the adult but that youth remains the responsibility of the hon the Minister and his department. We also know that underlying this is the great evil of intimidation and therefore we can probably call upon that community of Black parents with confidence that they should also mobilize what is positive and ward that evil from their ranks because the dislocation that is occasioned, the burning of buildings and boycotts do not lead to the development of those communities or the children of those communities—they lead only to the downfall of those people.
The hon member alleged that the department was on the downward path with its education—which is simply not true. The Vista University was established a few years ago to provide a specific need. It is doing brilliant work in fulfilling the need for better education. We have created the instruments which provide overall for equal standards and norms regarding financing, certification, etc so that the department may not be reproached that it is doing inferior work. We have good cause to say the motto of the department is: “The day is red, jump out of bed”. These people work but that hon member’s motto is: “This sun is red, just stay in bed.”
The department is faced with a great challenge. At the moment the State has to economize but when the upswing comes we have to develop the manpower potential with which the department works to its fullest possibility. A balance has to be maintained, however, between the purely academic and the more vocationally orientated training because the Great Artist has given us an instrument which no engineer can copy, not even the engineers manufacturing the space shuttle, namely the human hand. It can pick up a pin, play a musical instrument, or create an exquisite piece of sculpture! Let us develop the total potential of the child to the benefit of our entire labour force.
Mr Chairman, the hon member for Standerton will forgive me if I do not respond immediately to what he said. In the course of my speech I shall link up here and there with his speech.
The Department of Co-operation and Development performs a very important task and I wish to congratulate the hon the Minister and his staff on their very pleasant and attractive annual report. I should like to refer to a matter mentioned on page 5 of the annual report, namely development planning. The Subdirectorate of Ethnological Services conducted a very good study of the history, culture and composition of the Black peoples of South Africa. I agree with the hon member for Standerton that we should have this knowledge. It also went into the changes undergone by the aspects mentioned above. A need was felt to adapt development projects and measures to the culture of the various groups to eliminate social and cultural disruption. This is very important too.
In consequence of this study, Black education and educational systems could be investigated. Reports for example on school preparedness, education and planning and scholastic achievements were also published. One should consider social, religious and traidtional bonds in speaking of the education of Black people. Education is like a pyramid. The apex of the pyramid consists of the part one may call the education of a nation. If this pyramid is not based on the traditions and cultures of a people, it will never have a sturdy apex. Merely to begin at the top without considering the base, will lead to disaster. Education for Blacks should take the following into account: In the first place, their level of development and, in the second place, their culture. This culture is actually of a more creative nature, namely what the person can carry out and what he can see himself doing.
In the third place, the need of the specific society in which he finds himself should be considered; whether it is an urban or rural society is immaterial. In addition the ability of those people should be taken into account as well as the attitude they exhibit toward education.
When we note school boycotts at Black schools, note the destruction of schools and educational institutions, we have of necessity to come to the conclusion that a large number of those pupils are not yet ready—or perhaps do not wish to be ready yet—to accept the wishes of the White Government regarding them, namely education and facilities of an equal standard. Uncontrolled influx of Black people to White urban areas occasions an intertwining rather than an unravelling of the diversity. Government programmes of decentralization and deconcentration suffer serious damage as a result and Black towns in White areas become over-populated. In time they merely degenerate into breeding-places for agitation and unrest which are difficult to combat. The bona fide inhabitants of such an area naturally suffer in the circumstances.
Such huge towns with overpopulated residential areas more easily come to the attention of the outside world as well as people within the country who express unsolicited and damaging criticism against us. It will become decidedly necessary for the Government to change its pattern of the past years more purposefully and bring about a fresh suction force back to the national and self-governing Black states with everything attendant upon this—facilities and so on—otherwise the problem merely assumes increasing proportions. This will become necessary not only to decrease the idleness and uncontrolled population explosion but also to consider the water situation, especially on the East Rand and elsewhere in the Vaal Triangle.
We totally disapprove of the establishment of still more Black cities on the East Rand especially again the enormous demands already made upon our water supply. Industries as well as residential areas require a great deal of water. When there is no more water available, the industries will grind to a halt and the condition of unemployment will be endlessly aggravated. Together with this, insurrection and riots will inevitably increase.
The Government talks of urban Black people as if they were a separate group which now has to acquire a say in White areas. Does the Government now want to grant recognition to the fact that besides Whites, Coloureds and Indians, and naturally also the ten clearly distinguishable Black peoples, an eleventh population group is also to receive recognition—an urban Black population, a rootless, cultureless and an ethnically disassociated urban Black people? Are we still wondering why people attempt to vindicate themselves by means of violence? It is because their traditional bonds are fading and their identity is being threatened.
Education and Training already has preprimary, primary and secondary educational institutions as well as universities and technikons, facilities for vocational education, training facilities for teachers and educational facilities for the handicapped. I see in the annual report for instance that approximately 30% more finance is being requested than was done last year for all these separate educational institutions. This applies to the entire wide variety covering the whole educational spectrum. Yet it happens that those Black pupils who are incited to violence and listen to those of hostile attitude cause damage running into millions of rand to these educational facilities by the hurling of a stone and the lighting of a match. In this way they deprive the Black people—the Black children of the areas concerned—who are eager to make use of those facilities and opportunities of the right to do so. It takes a great deal of time to replace the burned down school buildings so that a proper opportunity may be created anew for those pupils to acquire education.
If White children were to resort to this type of action, I should like to know what their punishment would be—reformatories and everything coupled with them!
How can one wish to bring about an equal quality of education under such circumstances and what will the standard of this equal quality of education be which the Government wants to offer? I say these Black children who damage schools and rob people of their houses and other property through arson should be disciplined.
They rob people on buses and trains because they do not go to school and hang about. They set the houses of law-abiding inhabitants of those Black towns alight. They even set fire to people. They ridicule and taunt the Police Force. We ask how school-children in Black residential areas are able to carry out such a reign of terror as they are doing at present. Does the whole world and also certain elements internally have to sympathize with them in this way? Is this necessary? I think the sympathy belongs more to those people in the Black residential areas who suffer at the hands of these lawless, unbridled children.
It would be better to start at the bottom of this pyramid we wish to build by first imbuing them with pride in what is their own and then to know that they can put the correct, suitable education growing from their own background and own culture to good use and appreciate it. We should learn to evaluate their needs, their capabilities and their desires correctly and not to compel them to adapt to ours which are perhaps not acceptable to them. They are people who are fond of creating something. They are practical and creators instead of being theoretical. [Time expired.]
Mr Chairman, this is the first occasion on which the hon the Minister has dealt with this Vote and we on this side of the committee should like to wish him everything of the best. It is a great challenge to a great educationist and we believe he will handle it with great distinction.
We on this side of the committee should also like to convey our heartiest congratulations to the hon the Deputy Minister of Education and of Co-operation who was appointed in this capacity not very long ago. We know and are convinced that he will deal with the education of Black people in South Africa with great zeal and enthusiasm.
The hon member for Germiston District referred to the annual report of the Department of Co-operation and Development but I wish to refer to that of the Department of Education and Training. I wish to thank the department once again for the comprehensive annual report they have submitted to us; it is always a publication which can be read with great ease. It contains much information and it gives us pleasure to study it. May I express my hearty thanks to the department for this annual report.
Education, formal or informal, is the basis of the totality of human existence. Man, as the pinnacle of creation, has the ability of acquiring facts, digesting them and making them his own in order to reproduce them by means of conversation or even by putting them in writing. Man can remember them and also apply them. Man is therefore a creative being who is unique and distinctive and has to control and rule by divine command.
It is a fact that this human being has to undergo a development programme to enable him ultimately to be a total person. Most animals can be trained; through training they react to a command and can then carry out certain actions. In addition to the ability of being able to react to training, man—unlike an animal—has another characteristic—that of thought. When we are therefore dealing with a child, we have contributory factors to be taken into account. The child not only reacts to commands but has a mind of his own and decides for himself as well; he decides how he will repond. This has to be taken into consideration in education.
Just as each child differs from all other children, in the same way there is a diversity, a distinctiveness or perhaps a difference with regard to various population groups. In the time at my disposal I therefore wish to deal with the child as an individual in the first place and then also with the child in a group context. I shall therefore start with the child as an individual, as a single being, as one person, who cannot be ignored. Each differs from the other; no two children are alike. Because there is such a fundamental diversity, education and also specifically Black educational institutions like other such institutions have to take that diversity into account. If this diversity is not acknowledged and recognition is not given to the fact that not all children have the same abilities, expressions of will and fields of interest, education is not going to answer to its purpose.
In planning as regards primary education, the department endeavours to fulfil the needs of every child. Continuous attention is paid to furthering school preparedness and remedial education or instruction, also to pupils who are handicapped to a lesser degree mentally, in other words, the so-called subject instruction. In addition there are 1 291 schools using the upgrading programme in which almost 500 000 pupils are involved while 2 089 pupils are involved in individual instruction classes. This project has resulted in only 266 identified pupils’ being transferred to subject instruction because they could not benefit from individual instruction.
I am sketching these facts because it is important to broadcast what the department is doing in the interest of the child. It is very clear that the department is putting everything into operation to give each child only the best in the context of his class but also to each individual pupil. In spite of the 1 400 000 pupils in primary schools with a teacher/pupil ratio of 1:41,8 which we admit is high and not a sound state of affairs, the department and the loyal teaching force succeed in allowing each pupil who wishes to learn to derive the maximum benefit from it.
At the secondary level as well there is adequate opportunity for each pupil to excel. With the adoption of differentiated education, the department bound itself to making education available to every Black child in such a way that each could develop its full potential. Schools have been organized to a great extent to offer one or more of the four directions of study, namely the general, scientific, commercial and technical study directions. This therefore enables the pupil in great measure to plan his studies in such a way that they are future-orientated and career-orientated. This has led to conversion to the so-called comprehensive high schools where up to all four of these study directions may be offered in one school. The technical study direction in particular is offered at various high schools. This not only makes cheaper technical instruction available, but brings technical training to the child—an opportunity perhaps not always put to its fullest use by pupils.
To enable pupils to achieve greater success in examinations, most subjects are offered on the higher grade and standard grade so there is a differentiation there too. I feel a measure of concern that pupils are still caught up in the prestige value of a subject on the higher grade and they often permit themselves, at the cost of success, to be led by the glamour of the higher grade without its being necessary for university exemption. If one analyses the matriculation results, it is clear that a tendency remains to offer chiefly higher grade subjects. As an example 1 105 pupils offered history on the higher grade and only 14,9% passed whereas only 853 pupils offered history on the standard grade with a pass figure of 26,8%. The same tendency was discernible among pupils offering economics as a subject: 528 offered it on the higher grade, against 66 on the standard grade. The example best illustrating this is the subject of accountancy which has only a higher-grade value if it is offered in a commercial study direction. In spite of this fact, 548 pupils took accountancy on the higher grade with a pass figure of 32,1% whereas only 232 pupils offered it on the standard grade, with a pass figure of 51,8%. In this respect it is important to remember that it is necessary to offer only three subjects on the higher grade in order to obtain a matriculation exemption certificate.
In the minute or two remaining at my disposal, I wish to refer briefly to the child in the group context. Education is a universal phenomenon but it is important to know that the learning content is suitable to the nature and particular needs of the various chief population groups. In addition it is necessary to note that it is an important objective of educative training to prepare the youth to make a positive and constructive contribution later. [Time expired.]
Mr Chairman, I should like to associate this party with the remarks of welcome to the hon the Minister and his Deputy Minister to these portfolios in these very troubled times when they have great challenges, and at the same time with the remarks made by the hon the Minister concerning the members of his staff and their efforts during the year as well as the Deputy Director Mr Nienaber who is about to retire. At the same time we also associate ourselves with the welcome extended to the members for the Council for Education and Training who are present in the House today.
The hon the Minister has a vast department controlling the lives of millions of people from cradle to grave. He has an enormous challenge before him in respect of, not only this particular portfolio, Education and Training, but also the twin portfolio which he handles in the Department of Co-operation and Development as well. It is very obvious to us in these benches that the sort of input and action required in terms of sensitivity, imagination and effort, are going to demand a great deal from the hon the Minister, his Deputy Ministers and his staff, who in fact at this stage of South Africa’s political development—as I have mentioned before in this House—really are the representatives of the Black people in this Parliament. Until such a time as Blacks represent themselves, these hon members are the representatives of that huge Black constituency. The circumstances in that constituency are going to require a great deal of ability, compassion and understanding.
I might just say that the portfolio, in the four years that I have been in this House, has had four Ministers in control of it. So, that is one a year. I do not know whether this portfolio becomes a sort of shunting-yard or a junction in the Cabinet where people go before they go somewhere else. If that is the case and if the hon the Minister is going to be the next State President, I hope he will leave behind some well-prepared and well-trained Deputy Ministers and that he will open lots of doors for them, before leaving this portfolio. There is certainly a come and go situation here. Ministers come and go with the utmost rapidity without leaving us in the position where we can tackle a Minister two years in succession about things that we have spoken about before.
Because this portfolio is so large and covers such a vast field, what I would like to do today is to concentrate very specifically on one matter only namely education and training. It is something that we have brought up every year for the past four years, and at this stage I think we can say that there has been nil progress, certainly as far as secondary education in the rural areas is concerned. There has been no progress at all, and perhaps the hon the Minister will be here next year for us to hear a better report concerning this problem.
In a budget of R917 486 000, there is an increase of R209 229 000, or 29%. The principal increases are R66 983 000 for pre-primary and primary education, which is something that we on these benches are particular interested to see; R34 221 000 for university and technikon training, and lastly, the point I want to discuss, the increase for secondary education is R57 333 000. That is an amount which has gone up from R159 250 000 to R216 583 000.
The important thing is that this budgeted amount is separate from that of the self-governing national states, which appear on the Vote of Co-operation and Development. Of course it is also separate from the independent states, which receive grants-in-aid from the Department of Foreign Affairs. This leaves the urban and rural Blacks in the areas of the Republic of South Africa. Once again, if one addresses oneself to the urban Blacks in South Africa, one finds the situation where there is simply an incredible inadequacy of secondary education for those people. I should like to ask the hon the Minister to give particular attention to that in the year that lies ahead.
Reading through the Hansard of the past four years, I notice that the subject has been put before four different Ministers, and perhaps this is the reason why no action has been taken to improve the quality of life of the rural Blacks in the form of the provision of secondary education. The figures speak for themselves. In the entire Cape region, just taking one of the regions, there are only seven secondary schools taking pupils up to Std 8, and 16 senior secondary schools taking pupils up to Std 10. What is worse, is that in the entire Cape region there are only two hostels. In the border area there are no senior secondary schools in towns as big as Stutterheim, Komga, Cathcart and even King William’s Town. Imagine the public outcry if that were the circumstance pertaining to White children!
More important still is the fact that immediate emergency action should be taken to address that situation, and that is what I ask this hon the Minister to do. I ask him to take emergency action of some sort to provide secondary education in the rural areas now. After waiting for four years in which there has been no progress, I want to ask the hon the Minister very sincerely to see what he can do about selecting centres in the rural areas and applying some sort of emergency action. In most cases those children are expected to undertake their secondary education in one of the neighbouring national states or independent states. In a few cases where there is secondary education in the Republic it still involves them leaving home and going a long way at great cost. There are no boarding facilities, and if they are not fortunate enough to have relations or friends with whom they can board, they simply do not carry on with their secondary education. So their chances of offering their services on the labour market in competition with their urban counterparts are very poor indeed. They are at a distinct disadvantage. They are not in a state to absorb any sort of technical education because they have not had the necessary grounding. As for the avowed intention to get 12% or 14% of the labour force in the rural areas to participate in stabilizing and uplifting these people, they will not be able to play any part in that programme. The rural area as such is not going to be able to offer such a person the sort of future that will enable him to compete with his counterparts in the urban areas. As a result, the very rapid urbanization process will be exacerbated.
Surely prefabricated classrooms and locally recruited teachers, that is teachers recruited from among members of the community, could correct the situation almost overnight. Why has four years gone by without there having been any move at all? The lack of action can no longer be ascribed to ideological reasons. It would appear that for some reason—and I know it will be put to us that it is a question of priorities—the urban area is regarded as a priority. In my opinion, the quicker we build schools in the urban areas the quicker the people burn them down. For a change, perhaps we should build some schools in the rural areas—or at least give some attention to the rural areas—in order to allow those members of the Black population who are stable and who are not creating problems to be given an opportunity as far as education is concerned.
In all sincerity, I do not believe that the hon the Minister and his department can continue to overlook this matter. They must include it in their plans. If, however, the plan is not to do something about secondary education in the rural areas then I believe they should deviate from it and look at ways and means of giving those people secondary education as soon as possible. They can even provide education facilities on a temporary basis until such time as they can build permanent schools. [Time expired.]
Mr Chairman, I share the hon member for King William’s Town’s concern in connection with secondary training of children in rural areas. I am sure the hon the Minister will furnish him with a proper reply and also possibly be able to suggest a solution to his problem.
The quality of any educational system is determined chiefly inter alia by the quality and standard of the training and qualifications of the teaching corps. That is why it is so obvious that the Department of Education and Training should pay attention scrupulously and on a continuous basis—and it certainly does this in an exemplary manner—to the training and therefore the improvement in qualifications of the teaching corps in its service.
To be able to visualize to some degree the problems with which the department has to contend, mention has to be made of the high percentage of underqualified teachers in its service. As an example, the qualifications of 71,7% of all Black male and female teachers are lower than category C, that means three years of training after Std 10. Consequently, 71,7% of the teachers either have no Std 10 certificate or have not had three years of training after Std 10. In 1983 only 24,3% of teachers in secondary schools for Blacks had a Std 10 certificate and a professional qualification. It is therefore very clear that the problem of the department as regards the training of its teachers is in fact of a dual nature: Firstly, there is the problem of improving the qualifications of teachers who are already in service and secondly that of the provision of adequately, well-trained and well-qualified teachers to fulfil the needs of the ever-increasing number of pupils. The latter in itself is an enormous task if we bear in mind that the primary pupil roll in 1992 is estimated as 1 700 000 and the secondary pupil roll 640 000. It is estimated that 27 275 additional primary school teachers and 12 545 secondary school teachers will be required in schools of this department for the period 1985 to 1992.
Let me say immediately that I have been deeply impressed by one fact which is as plain as a pikestaff. This is that the department does not deal with the problem mentioned in a haphazard way but by means of intensive planning in the short and long term makes every effort to solve these problems. What is the department doing? To ensure the highest degree of effectiveness, a threepronged approach is followed in the training of teachers. First there is basic training, secondly, further training and thirdly, in-service training.
The question is what is understood by basic training. This is training for people who are being trained for the first time for this career. From as early as 1982 a Std 10 or Matriculation certificate has been required for admission to one of the teachers’ colleges which is followed by a further three years’ training at the college. Selection of students for teacher training is receiving urgent attention; a new system has been designed to counter all problems as far as possible. Selection will be linked to the award of bursaries and be the basis of this. The system will be launched early this year (1985) with a view to the 1986 intakes by all the teacher training institutions. Reasonable selection has been made possible and facilitated by the larger number of candidates attaining Std 10 and Matriculation certificates at present.
There are currently seven colleges of education under the control of the department. At the beginning of this year the department started a new type of college of education to which the hon the Minister has already referred. These are colleges without hostels for students from the immediate vicinity in residential areas with a population large enough to ensure an annual intake of 150 to 200 students. In this way more communities can be furnished with teacher training facilities. As hostels are not supplied, this type of college will result in lower financial expenditure. Two of these community-linked colleges of education were opened in Kimberley and Bloemfontein at the beginning of 1985. It is planned ultimately to erect ten of this type of college of education.
As regards basic training, it is envisaged to institute four-year training courses in addition to the existing three-year courses at these colleges of education with a view to more thorough training, further specialization and better qualifications. The department has purchased 22 Commodore 64 computers for each of the seven colleges of education with a view to sending out all students leaving the college of education with a lesser or greater degree of computer training—according to ability. It is clear that the quality of basic training receives continuous attention by the provision of effective facilities regarding accommodation as well as equipment and by the raising of training standards.
Another type of training, known as further training, is also being addressed in depth by this department. This type of training is directed especially at underqualified teachers and creates opportunities for them to improve their qualifications. The following opportunities for further training already exist: Firstly circuit centres where teachers not yet in possession of a Matriculation certificate receive instruction and aid with a view to obtaining such a certificate.
Secondly the Vista University offers training courses instituted to increase the years of training after matriculation. Thousands of underqualified teachers take these courses to improve their qualifications. Vista also offers full-time courses for prospective teachers, namely BA Ed, B Com Ed and HED.
The training of teachers in a technical direction is already taking place at the Northern Transvaal Technikon. Similar courses are also ready in full swing at the Soweto and East Rand Colleges of Education.
Four one-year specialization courses, namely in art, physical education, remedial teaching and school librarianship are already being offered as well. There are plans for the institution of a further seven one-year specialization courses, namely commercial subjects, mathematics, music, physics and chemistry, agriculture, vocational guidance and pre-primary.
A third type of training is known as in-service training. It does not lead to further or improved qualifications but is directed at the sharpening of teachers’ subject knowledge, the refreshing of knowledge of new syllabuses and syllabus contents and the improvement of teachers’ effectiveness and expertise as teachers. Lack of time does not permit me to enlarge on all the methods of in-service training.
In the long term the department strives to attain the ideal situation which comprises inter alia first, that all teachers—or the majority of them—will have at least matriculation plus three years’ training; secondly, that the pupil/teacher ratio in the primary school should be 35 pupils to one teacher and in the secondary school 30 pupils to a teacher. [Time expired.]
Mr Chairman, in opening my speech I should also like to extend good wishes to the hon the Minister and the hon the Deputy Minister in the exceptionally difficult task resting on their shoulders. We know they are capable, however; we know they accept the challenge and we know they will make a success of it.
The hon the Minister referred to escalating costs of education, the need for more and better teachers and the need for improving facilities. It is important that we give urgent attention to these aspects; the challenge to continue providing better and more effective educational training in South Africa should never be underestimated.
Surely we cannot come to a debate like this and speak about stones being hurled at a school as the hon member for Germiston did. Against the stone-throwers there are thousands of pupils very eager to qualify so that they may create a viable future for themselves. We cannot be negative by referring to the riots and in consequence of them fail to provide for the need that does exist.
You also want to bring Indians to the Free State! [Interjections.]
That hon Free State leader of the CP should return to HarriSmith; we want to give him a trouncing there again. [Interjections.]
In technological fields in particular as much use as possible should be made of all effective aids to achieve the desired results. Underdevelopment is the breeding-ground of socialism and socialist ideology. When exploitation of the underdeveloped takes place, the state structure is usually held responsible. By means of education a concept should also be established that everyone can achieve success if he qualifies himself adequately and that the success of one is not possible only through the failure of another.
The State dispensation should not be seen as an oppressor but as the provider of the means and the means to an end for which one wishes to qualify oneself. The results of training should be measurable to enable a student to measure his own involvement and the extent of his capabilities daily. In our democratic structure, in which there is unlimited opportunity, it depends only on whether one has qualified oneself to make a good living. Against this there is no selfsatisfaction possible in the socialist structure. The socialist structure disparages the democratic system as supposedly consisting of parasites battening on the vices of others.
By the use of aids such as the computer—and previous hon members referred to computers—as support in formal education, pupils can be dealt with more effectively and more pupils can be dealt with simultaneously. The computer has already invaded everyday life to a great degree and, without being prophetic, I want to say that in future it will become the core of the success of institutions in research, industry and the commercial world. Consequently by the use of the computer as an aid to education, the pupil is not only being better prepared for his future career but in our country—as a developing country—it will be an aid in assisting the acceleration of the transition of the standard from that of the Third World to that of the First World.
Computers are already in use at colleges of education for training and according to my information with very great success. An adequate number of trained lecturers will have to be a priority so that prospective teachers may receive the necessary effective training before they in turn can train pupils successfully.
It will also to the advantage of the private sector to be of assistance to the Department of Education and Training in establishing what computer equipment will be the most suitable for this purpose. It has already been made possible for six systems to be installed at a college of education through a donation. This system is being applied very effectively. Nevertheless it is also desirable that more computers, and especially microcomputers with a greater capacity, should be acquired and tested for the sake of greater variety.
From research already done, it appeared that pupils experienced no adjustment problems; in fact, the attendance figure of pupils was excellent and their interest very great. There were even pupils who returned voluntarily after hours for training. There has been great praise of the rapid results and excellent progress of pupils; especially as regards mathematics, pupils progressed excellently with the aid of the computer. Previous poor mathematical capabilities of students and even of teachers were greatly improved. There will be students who do not have an aptitude for computer instruction but random tests have indicated that a very great percentage not only has a good aptitude for this but after only six months shows excellent progress and easily fulfils expectations set at the course.
I accept the department already has an overloaded syllabus and will have difficulty in finding time for an additional subject. In consequence I accept that aptitude tests will be desirable so that students not showing an aptitude for this will not unnecessarily be brought under the impression that they will be required to devote time to computer studies as well at the expense of other subjects which will allow them to progress further according to their aptitude. Very high demands are being made today across the entire spectrum of education in South Africa and it is becoming increasingly necessary that aptitude tests be done at an early stage to relieve students of unnecessary pressure by timeously removing subjects according to the student’s aptitude and keeping a student positively involved so that in consequence of the good results he achieves he is encouraged and not discouraged because of subjects he is unable to master. If the computer can facilitate his task even further, even greater zeal will be exhibited by a student and his achievements will be greater.
Various technologies may also be applied in support of each other. Television, for example, has the advantage of being able to convey information simultaneously to a large number of viewers. The computer has the particular advantage of conveying information on the basis of direct interaction with individual pupils. The feedback to the pupil on his own progress is observed by the pupil himself in a way in which he is unable to suspect the teacher of not being favourably disposed towards him because it is unfortunately the case that many pupils believe that a teacher is the cause if they do not succeed. With the help of the computer the teacher can even carry out remedial work very easily with weaker pupils. If the pupil sees the results of his capabilities himself and improves his results with the aid of the teacher, a better pupil/teacher relationship will also exist. Unfortunately many pupils believe that if they can read and write they possess all the wisdom required to be able to obtain a good position. The computer can create an entirely new world for a pupil to remove the idea that only reading and writing are the keys to the future.
Mr Chairman, I would also like to extend my congratulations to the hon the Minister and the hon the Deputy Minister on their assumption of office in this department. As I told the hon the Deputy Minister a little earlier, I think he is still enjoying a honeymoon period, but it must be the only honeymoon period he knows of where he has sticks and stones thrown at him.
I am very pleased that the hon the Minister made what I believe is a fairly good declaration of intent for this department. I was rather amused by some of the things in the printed statement that was issued that he did not say, and perhaps I should make reference to one of them. Last year I referred at the beginning of my speech to Dr Verwoerd’s 1953 speech and said that I thought the department had moved away from it. With this declaration of intent, they have turned their back on it, and I am quite sure we can relegate Dr Verwoerd’s 1953 statement to the archives where it quite properly belongs.
There are a number of points in the hon the Minister’s statement I want to deal with. The first concerns the statement that he intends to open—one of his colleagues also referred to it—small colleges of education around South Africa. Last year the hon the Minister, when he held another position, said that he thought that the opening of half or three-quarter empty White colleges would not solve the problem. I did not intend to suggest that it would solve the problem. What I thought it would do was that it might help alleviate some of the difficulties and the pressures at places. Here I must again make reference to Edgewood College of Education which cost R24 million to build and which can cater for 1 500 students but which has fewer than 600 students at the present moment. Surely there is no need for the State to spend more money building another small college in that area when it can use that place and the student facilities available there.
Secondly, I would like to refer to the fact that the hon the Minister talked about a fixed time schedule. I am very pleased to hear this because there was a time in the not so distant past when this Government was well aware that it did not wish to issue or discuss a fixed time schedule. I have only one problem. Fixed time schedules should be known and made public because otherwise one has a perception that the Government is dragging its feet. I do not believe that at the present moment in this particular department it is dragging its feet as quite a lot of people outside this House may describe it. Without those time schedules and without them being made public this perception still exists.
I should like to turn now to one of the statements the hon the Minister made concerning the depolitization of Black education. The key to the solution of the current unrest in South African schools does not rest with the police, and I agreed quite wholeheartedly with the hon the Minister when he said a day or two ago the key rested with Black education and with adequate provision in the sphere of Black education. That being the case I should like to suggest that the impression being given at the present moment in the Press and the media—I am glad he made reference to this—is that these hon Ministers are acting as fire-fighters running from one point of unrest to the other, quelling little and big fires that are bursting out all over the country, while, I am afraid, the key inflammatory issues are either not being addressed or are being dismissed as unimportant.
I come now to a point made by the hon member for Standerton who said we had not made reference to the issue of one single department of education. I do not want to claim that this comes from me. It comes from the students. It has been reported publicly in the media and even in research journals that one of the key demands is that there be a single Ministry of Education. Again I must say this is not seen as a total panacea. One single Ministry is not going to solve all the problems. What it is going to do, however, is to change the public view of this department.
The hon the Minister of National Education—in one of the other House, I believe—spoke yesterday about the parrot-cry in the three Houses for a single Department of Education. It is not true that this is a parrotcry. It is an appeal to this Government to have the sense to realize that there are sections of pupils, of students and of parents with the perception that whilst they are hived off in the Department of Education and Training they appear not to be getting a fair deal. It is actually no use the hon the Minister and his colleagues in the National Party stating that things have never been better in Black education. There is more money, yes. There are better standards, yes. There is better teacher provision, yes. All these things may be so, and we acknowledge they are so. Things are indeed improving. It is, however, not going to change the perceptions of the Black communities. If things are so good—and this is how they look at it—the hon the Minister will not mind if Whites and Blacks write the same examinations, interchange syllabuses and go to one another’s schools or technikons. He cannot, however, alter the fact that things are not so good. There is a difference. Let us not dismiss this concept of one Ministry.
The hon the Deputy Minister said in a Press statement that the Department of National Education—as it is now constructed—was the one Ministry called for in the De Lange Commission report. This is patently not the case. It has overlying responsibilities for particular areas of education. What I do acknowledge—and we said this when the Bill setting out the general affairs national policy was being debated here last year—is that the Department of National Education has the possibility of being the single Ministry called for. Let us give it some teeth, Mr Chairman. Let the people of South Africa see that single standards are being striven for. Give it some teeth. Give it some assessment rights. Let us have interdepartmental, interministerial judgements. Let us tell everybody that the children of South Africa are receiving equal education, writing equal examinations. Let us guarantee that in law. Let us make it an offence for an employer to discriminate between two people because of the examination that they write. Let us make it an offence if that Ministry thinks its examinations are equal. Let us ensure that all South Africans perceive that this is not an inferior education system.
The second broad category of complaints concerning the separate department at the moment consists of what are apparently factors outside this department. I stress the word “apparently”. The hon the Minister has also made reference to so-called socioeconomic and political matters. They are not outside this department at all. They are there—malnutrition, overcrowding, lack of amenities, poor health, lack of an educationally supportive environment, influx control, passes, work, police, riots, political frustration, and so forth. All these things affect every single child in the hon the Minister’s department and they affect all of us.
All of these are combined in the rejection of apartheid. The hon the minister cannot say pupils must not be politicized; they are politicized. When one asks any 15 or 16 year old for a pass, one finds that he is politicized. A child who sees his father out of work or in jail becomes more and more politicized. The Government separates him in a separate department of education, and he is politicized.
What can this department do about these areas? I do not think we should shy away from these areas, and I do not think that the department should shy away from them. I think they must look at a process of going to the teachers, going to the students and allowing these things to be discussed and allowing them to be handled. This should at least be channelled into constructive discussion, but at the moment this is not happening.
In conclusion in this connection let me mention the SRCs. Last year I praised the hon the Minister for wanting to improve his communication structure. I am glad he has moved to alleviate this grievance. I am sorry that it has taken so long to solve this problem finally. I am glad that the hon the Deputy Minister has issued a Press statement again in this connection.
Surely the hon the Minister must have some common sense. When he proposes an SRC for the politicized students of South Africa, he must not talk about SRCs possibly doing such things as taking care of the principal’s office or sending get-well cards. This is nonsense and it is being laughed at in those schools. We have to face reality in this country, but this is not apparent in the Act. Let us see where we get to in June.
I attended various school prizegivings and I addressed some last year. The final SRC structures agreed to by the department will then be implemented in certain White schools so that they can see how the new structures work. They will then also be able to see the problems and the difficulties. I believe that we need this communication structure in all schools in South Africa. [Time expired.]
Mr Chairman, I shall not respond to matters raised by the hon member for Pinetown as the hon the Minister is sure to do so in his reply. The hon member for Standerton has already dealt with the matter of one education department, something on which the hon member laid so much stress. I do not know what the hon member wants further; he obviously does not realize the consequences of his point of view but I think the hon the Minister will go into this matter once again.
In this speech I wish to pay attention today to tertiary education and the institutions for education available at this level to Black people in South Africa.
In opening I wish to say that tertiary institutions are of the utmost importance to every developed or developing community because they enable people to furnish their particular communities with better service through augmented knowledge. The importance of tertiary institutions lies in the fact that they also supply high-level manpower and, as regards universities, essential research. In consequence universities and technikons are indispensable to every community as tertiary institutions for education.
As regards universities, the following institutions primarily served Black communities until 1978: Firstly the University of Fort Hare, secondly the University of Zululand and thirdly the University of the North. Since then the Medical University of Southern Africa, also called Medunsa, has been established as well as three branches of existing universities, namely the Qwaqwa branch of the University of the North, the Umlazi branch of the University of Zululand and the Zwelitsha branch of the University of Fort Hare.
In terms of Act 106 of 1981 the Vista University was established. This University was instituted for the purpose of making tertiary education possible to Black people in urban areas in the Republic of South Africa. Since 1983 this university has been operating at the following five campuses: The Mamelodi campus near Pretoria, the Soweto campus in Johannesburg, the Batho campus in Bloemfontein, the Zwide campus near Port Elizabeth and the Sebokeng campus in Vereeniging.
The Vista University also has a campus in Pretoria for the further training of teachers. The objective of the system of further training which was originally initiated by the Department of Education and Training is the raising of the general standard of education and simultaneously offering teachers the opportunity of improving their qualifications. In 1982 this function was taken over by the Vista University as regards the training of teachers for secondary schools. The Vista University campus for further training offers teachers the opportunity of increasing their qualifications to a salary scale in category C by gaining a secondary teachers’ diploma. The hon member for Kimberley North referred to this comprehensively in his speech. Each of the two courses offered covers two years. The growth in the number of teachers taking these courses is phenomenal. In 1982 there were 300, in 1983 2 200 and in 1984 4 400. In 1985 a figure of 7 080 is expected, so you see, Sir, the phenomenal growth in the interest in these courses.
What is exceptionally heartening is the steady growth in student enrolment at the universities concerned. Enrolments for the past five years illustrate this trend. At the University of the North there were 2 752 students in 1980 and 4 923 in 1984; at the University of Zululand there were 2 072 students in 1980 and 4 011 in 1984; at the University of Fort Hare the growth was not as impressive for specific reasons—it increased from 3 062 in 1980 to 3 070 in 1984. In 1983 the Vista University had 3 001 students and by 1984 that figure had grown to 6 215. This includes part-time students studying at the campus for further training; of them there were 2 234 in 1983 and 4 470 in 1984. If we wish to speak about a success story in contrast to what the hon member for Pinetown said—who is unfortunately not present at the moment—we can say it of these figures, especially concerning the Vista University.
Secondly I wish to refer to technikons. Next to the university, technikons offer the highest training at tertiary level to Black people. The objective of this education is the development of technical manpower and technological leadership as regards middle and high-level manpower in all spheres to fulfil the needs of the country in so doing. The degree to which the technikons will serve the Black population will be co-determined by the support given to them by the private sector. With this co-operation, the courses offered will make a wide choice of careers possible in commerce and in management and engineering as well as in the paramedical sphere. The Department of Education and Training regards technikon education for Black people as a high priority. It is the same as the vocational education offered to other population groups. Again in contrast to what the hon member for Pine-town said, the same syllabuses and identical national examinations are used for all population groups.
The Northern Transvaal Technikon, earlier known as the Mabopane East Technikon, offers courses in electrical, mechanical and civil engineering, surveying, geology, mining, the physical sciences, health sciences and secretarial management. Since 1982 a secondary technical diploma course has been offered at this institution. There is also phenomenal growth as regards student enrolment figures; in 1980 there were 81 students at this technikon and in 1984 the number had grown to 1 255.
The Department of Education and Training deserves praise for the excellent work it does—also in the sphere of tertiary education. In consequence of this work, people of all population groups who are well equipped academically will be able to co-operate in the building of a great South Africa.
Mr Chairman, the hon member for Potgietersrus must pardon me if I do not follow up on his theme.
I do not think there is anyone in this House who is not concerned about the extent of the unrest in our country. What is alarming is the fact that ever increasing numbers of Black juveniles are being involved in the school boycotts and the disorder. I have no fear that the disorder will get out of hand, but I am upset because young people are being incited to rebel against the Christian values and norms which have been established over centuries with so much dedication by so many well-intentioned Christians. The onslaught as I see it, is aimed at Christianity in this country, and even Bishops and other Church leaders are blithely helping to incite and confuse the youth. A situation has been reached in which the masses are rebelling violently, and like barbarians, against the cornerstone of civilization, viz discipline and authority. Over a period of many years there has been an increasing measure of insurrection at schools—caused by a variety so-called grievances—which has undermined discipline to such an extent that meaningful education has become virtually impossible. These days the disorder is marked by a repulsive barbarism which makes one wonder what became of the Christian quality which well-intentioned believers gave to Black education over the years.
If, arising from what I have already said, I have to suggest how the problem should be solved, I must confess that I do not know what action on the part of the education authorities will resolve the situation as long as an onslaught is being made from all quarters on the crumbling Christian foundation of the Black communities. I would say that the only permanent solution would be a long-term solution which would restore the authority of the parents and reinforce the Christian character of education. Until the parents can intervene and enforce discipline, the onslaught on the Christian character of the school and the community will continue. The community will very soon have to strengthen the hands of the education authorities and the parents to discipline the youth. If this is not done, the community will have to face up to a situation which will lead to socio-economic conditions that will make it difficult to find solutions. Before the parents become involved, leaders who reject violent action will have to come forward out of the community and as Christians seek solutions along the path of peace and negotiation. Before this happens, however, the leaders—and this includes the church leaders—who are inciting the youth to revolution will have to be rejected by the community and restrained by the authorities.
This will not be easy, because most of the leaders who at present lay claim to positions of authority in the community, are revolutionaries in Christian garb. Nowhere does one read about or hear of this kind of leader encouraging the youth to return to school and behave in a civilized way. Now that the gangster element is taking over the well-intentioned strikes and boycotts at schools and industries and threatening the position of authority of the preachers with violence, an occasional appeal for calm is being heard. Dr Beyers Naude, the General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches, said in a report in Die Burger of 25 April:
Dr Naude went on to say that, to an increasing extent, there were groups of young people in the Black communities who no longer had any respect for any form of authority. He also said:
I want to say to Dr Beyers Naude that if the new approach is simply a variation of the old pattern which is followed by disorder, he and the group which is going to help him will not succeed in restoring calm among the scholars. I do not think the leaders to whom Dr Naude referred could, owing to their own profligacy and the rejection of authority which is so characteristic of their conduct, persuade these confused, restless young people to accept even parental authority.
The boycott of schools by juveniles who are incited to reject all forms of authority goes back a long way in the history of Black education. In the 1920s already there were grievances which led to the boycotting of schools. In 1939 the National Union of African Youth came into existence. In 1944 the ANC established the Youth League which established its own schools in Newclare, Johannesburg. This was also a new approach according to the old pattern. In 1954 the ANC launched the Resist Apartheid Campaign, and during the same year more than 10 000 students boycotted the schools on the Rand. In 1961 the Students Association involved high school pupils and university students in the boycott campaigns. 1972 saw the beginning of the South African Students’ Movement. In June 1976 the Soweto Student Representative Council launched a “peaceful” protest, which led within a few days to the death of approximately 150 people.
April 1980 brought the establishment of Azapo and Cosas, and in the same year there were boycotts of Black as well as Coloured schools. During 1983 the Azaso Congress was held in Cape Town, with the following object:
Last year there were 44 branches of Cosas throughout the country, and we saw the beginning of co-ordinated actions between striking scholars and striking workers. The president of Cosas, Lulu Johnson, who is associated with the UDF, said, and I am quoting her words from Saspo Focus, volume 13, of November 1984:
During the second half of 1984 an alliance was formed between Azaso, Cosas, Nusas and the National Education Union of South Africa. As has already been said, all these actions took place with the blessing of many of the leaders to whom Dr Naude was referring.
Now that they realize that their actions have given rise to the subversion of all forms of authority, and that the gangsters are ultimately in control, they are seeking a new approach. It is doubtful, however, whether they will find a new approach which will calm down the rioters. I also want to see a new approach to the problem, but it must be a Christian approach, formulated by believers. It is definitely not yet too late to halt the onslaught on the Christian character of education. Recently a large group of community leaders from the ranks of the Black local authorities met on the East Rand under the chairmanship of Mr Tom Boya and drew up a charter which declared inter alia :
When Bishop Lekganyane, during the service at Moria, told his more than 4 million followers:
then we realize what new approach should actually be followed in the struggle to preserve the Christian values and norms in education.
Mr Chairman, the hon member for Maraisburg will forgive me if I do not follow directly on the subject which he has debated this afternoon. In the very limited time available to me, I would like to elaborate on a subject broached by the hon member for King William’s Town earlier in this debate, namely the education of Black children in rural areas.
During this debate last year, I made an appeal to the hon the Minister to investigate the plight of Black farm-school children in the system as it operates. In fact, I have made this appeal to every Minister who has held this portfolio, every year since I have been in Parliament; and every year I have been given assurance that something will be done. To date, however, the situation remains exactly the same.
Then why do you not do something about it?
For the record, let me repeat the dilemma of the farm child. The hon member over there obviously thinks that this is an amusing subject, but I can assure him that the Black farm children who are underprivileged do not find it amusing at all. [Interjections.]
Firstly, if the child is lucky and his parents happen to work for an enlightened farmer who has provided educational facilities, or if he happens to work in an enlightened neighbourhood, the chances are that the child will have access to a school. This access, because of the nature of the system which depends on the goodwill of the farmer, is very much a privilege and not a right. That is the first disadvantage which the farm child suffers. Unlike the White child, or even the Black urban child, the Black farm child cannot claim the right of access to a local school. Even if there is a Black school on an adjacent farm, the fanner who manages that school has the right to determine who has access to it, and he is under no obligation at all to allow children other than those who live on his farm to attend that school.
The second disadvantage concerns the level of education to which the Black farm-child can aspire at his local school. No farm school in this country goes beyond Standard 5. That is the cut-off point for even those farm children who have the privilege of attending such a school. It is then that their problems begin in earnest. The hon member for King William’s Town did mention this. In terms of the way that the school system operates, a farm child—and this is important—has no right to attend a school in an urban area. If there is a vacancy at a town school, the farm child may be admitted. He must, however, stand last in the queue for a place at that school. Urban children enjoy precedence over him.
It is common knowledge that virtually all Black schools in the towns are, under normal circumstances, bursting at the seams and the farm-child has little or no chance of being accepted. Even if he has the good fortune to be accepted at a school, he still labours under a third major disadvantage. There are, as far as I am aware, no State-assisted boarding facilities in this country for Black children—that is, as far as I am aware; perhaps the hon the Minister can correct me. The child must find accommodation with friends or family in the town if this is possible. Can hon members imagine the reaction among, for instance, White farmers if their own children were treated in this way, that is if they did not have the right to send their children to their local town school, and if boarding facilities were not provided—and then at a heavily subsidized rate?
We know that because of these shortcomings in the system, tens of thousands of Black farm children are being placed at a disadvantage every year. The time has now come for the department to cease giving us vague assurances that the matter is being attended to when quite patently it is not. According to reports, a departmental committee has been set up to investigate the complaints against this system. If this is so, we welcome it and we would request the hon the Minister to give us further details. For instance, what is the scope of this committee’s work? Will it address itself to the complaints which have been raised year after year in this House? We would appreciate a specific answer to this very specific question.
Mr Chairman, this is the first time I am rising to speak in this capacity and, as is usually the case in one’s life, the first time is a special occasion. It is also an exceptional privilege for me to be able to have a mentor in the person of someone of the calibre of the hon the Minister of Co-operation, Development and Education. I can assure hon members that I consider it to be an exceptional privilege to perform this important task under his tutelage. The hon member for King William’s Town said a moment ago that we are in fact representing the Black communities here, and I want to assure him that we are thoroughly aware of that. But I also want to assure him that I consider this to be a special occasion because one is able to render service to others and try to improve the world in which they live. It is an exceptional pleasure for me to be able to work at this task.
On this occasion I should also like to convey my sincere to the officials of our department for having received a young man gently in their midst and for trying, with great sympathy, to keep him on the right track. It is with great regret that we have to take leave of our Deputy Director-General, Mr Nienaber. We have become attached to him. He is typical of the officials in our department, people whom one can look up to. We have very great appreciation for the service which he rendered and we want to wish him and Mrs Nienaber a very prosperous retirement. They deserve it, because they meant a great deal to our country and to our people.
†I am also glad that Dr Matseke, Mr Zwane and Mr Seboli of the Council for Education and Training are here today. I am particularly glad that Mr Zwane is here because he is from the East Rand and we East Randers stick together and produce results.
Sir, apparently the hon member for Hillbrow has never heard that wisdom always comes from the East. He will still learn this.
On this occasion I should like to congratulate the hon member for Kimberley North very sincerely on his election to the position of chairman of the Education subgroup. We are very pleased that he, as one of the 1974 group, is able to occupy that respected position. The brilliant speech which he made here today on education and training confirms his competence, and we should also like to thank him in advance for the co-operation which we will receive from him and our group over there. I should also like to thank the members on our side, who have already participated in the debate, for their contributions and also for the pleasant spirit of co-operation in which we were able to prepare for the discussion of this Vote.
†I also want to thank the hon member for Cape Town Gardens and the other members for their good wishes. I am sure we are going to need it but I am also sure that we can count on their support in the days that he ahead.
*I also want to thank the hon member for Standerton for his enthusiastic, heart-warming congratulations. We have always had appreciation for him and for the enthusiastic way in which he is able to state his case.
†The hon member for Albany did not have much time to address us today. I do not know if the election results in the Eastern Cape had anything to do with it, and whether his time was cut short on that issue. I want to say that we on this side of the House share his concern for the position of the children in the rural areas. It is true that a commission of inquiry was appointed on 15 April but I think the hon the Minister will elaborate on that point.
*The hon members for Cape Town Gardens and Pinetown referred inter alia to the school boycotts, the SRCs and also to certain matters related to communication, to which I shall refer again during the course of my speech.
†The task of the Department of Education and Training is, as the hon the Minister said earlier, to provide the best possible education and to enable every individual pupil to develop to his full potential according to his needs, his aptitudes and his abilities.
The department therefore has a very real responsibility towards the country and all its people. After all, it is true that by the year 2020 Blacks will make up 78% of our population. Stability, progress and economic growth will depend more and more on the degree to which the best possible education can be offered and the degree to which opportunities are utilized.
For these reasons we cannot allow education to become a political instrument to be used for the achievement of specific political goals. For these reasons it is also our standpoint and policy to establish and maintain healthy communication and sound attitudes in the interests of communities, parents and children.
Looking at the reasons for the boycotts it is an indisputable fact that many grievances and resultant boycotts are politically inspired. The most common grievance put forward is the so-called inferior education. Those people making this accusation conveniently ignore the fact that we are dealing here with circumstances that occur all over the world where education is offered to developing nations. The instant solutions sometimes offered for the extremely complex and extensive challenges often derive from invalid comparisons with older education departments that are firmly established.
The hon member for Standerton mentioned some of the challenges facing this department. I think these challenges are evident if one takes into consideration that our department has to provide annually for more than 50 000 additional pupils; that at least 60 new schools must be built every year; and that we have to have 1 500 additional teachers and experienced principals to man our schools.
No one needs to be clairvoyant to realize what the financial and logistic implications of these growth rates are. Against the background of these parameters all the department’s programmes are aimed at the bridging of backlogs and at the elimination of inequalities in education—a task not always seen in perspective and which cannot be completed in just a few years.
I wish to focus once again on the fact that the Government has committed itself to a policy of equal education opportunities for all population groups. Although we still have a long way to go to reach that goal, the fact is that we are committed to provide equal education opportunities. We have accepted this challenge.
*Besides the grievance of “inferior education”, reference was also made initially, when the school unrest began to flare up last year, to specific other grievances—to which the hon member for Cape Town Gardens also referred—relating to education as the reason for the boycotts.
I can say, however, that after the department had learned about these grievances, attention was immediately given to these problem areas. It is interesting to note, however, that the moment a justified grievance was eliminated by our department, new and frequently ridiculous grievances were presented to us, as regularly as clockwork. This tendency escalated to such an extent that a situation was reached in which grievances which were ostensibly at the root of the boycotts, subsequently had no bearing whatsoever any more on education. Grievances in regard to house rentals, bus fares and even the arrests of pupils found guilty of criminal offences entirely outside a school context, were presented as reasons for the school unrest.
Surely all these facts point unequivocally to the full-scale misuse of the pupils for destabilizing political aims. Therefore I find it strange that the hon member for Cape Town Gardens cannot understand this, and that he cannot perceive the role of the so-called outsiders in this unrest. [Interjections.] In spite of this course of events, we have tried with sustained efforts to normalize education in the interests of the child, his parents and the community.
The hon members spoke about a breakdown in communication. I want to tell them, however, that numerous talks were held, which sometimes went on for days and nights. These talks were held on various levels with interested parties, and those attending these talks varied from pupils to community leaders and parents. We did not hesitate to single out senior officials on the local level to launch enquiries or to hold discussions. This process is still continuing today.
I think that the untiring zeal of all our officials and of the teachers, who sometimes found themselves in perilous situations, deserve our tribute and thanks. [Interjections.]
I think we ought to say to these people that South Africa appreciates the service which they are rendering for the sake of a meaningful future.
One of the other demands which is frequently heard is the demand for the so-called representative student councils, the SRCs. The hon member for Pinetown referred to the structure which was established. He referred to certain aspects of it as nonsense, and said that certain people were referring to it derogatorily.
Surely the hon member ought to know that these were mere proposals which we said were part of the process of establishing a students council. We did not in that way lay down rigid guidelines and say that an SRC should specifically perform that task. We invited the whole of South Africa to make inputs in regard to the SRCs. I should like to ascertain from hon members what proposals they submitted to the department for the improvement of the SRCs.
As long ago as February 1984 the former Minister of Education and Training was dealing with this matter, and last year during the discussion of the Vote it was announced that comprehensive new communication structures, which included democratically representative students’ councils, or SRCs, would be introduced.
These structures were established after comprehensive consultation and talks with inter alia the Council for Education and Training, the organized teaching profession and individuals, including individuals from the Black communities.
The original objectives—it is important that we take cognizance of this—with these communication structures were that we wanted to offer our pupils, and hon members must listen carefully now, an effective democratic channel of communication so that problems and grievances could receive immediate attention. This object was recklessly distorted and exploited.
It is significant that this fully democratic system, which in our opinion answered in all respects to the demands made on us by pupils, was summarily rejected and labelled as a “bogus constitution” by the UDF and Cosas, even before they read it.
During October 1984 Azaso stated unequivocally that “SRCs at Black schools would be used as trade unions.”
In spite of all these things we continued to hold in-depth talks with various organizations. I am not aware of any organization which approached us and told us that they wanted to discuss this matter with us and was turned away. We issued an open invitation to all interested parties to make contributions to improve these structures. These contributions are now being studied and will, before they are implemented, be submitted to the Council for Education and Training, the African Teachers’ Association of South Africa (Atasa), the Association of Inspectors in the RSA and the National Co-ordinating Committee of Parents’ Committees.
We should like to introduce these structures into our education system, for the sake of better communication. I want to state unequivocally today, however, that we cannot allow these structures to be misused so that pupils can take over the control of our schools. Nowhere in the world would this be tolerated, and certainly not here in South Africa.
Another matter which was frequently advanced as a grievance was the so-called age limits. The hon member for Cape Town Gardens also referred to this. The age limits, which arise as a result of the quantity/quality dilemma and for which purely educational grounds exist in other education departments, were from the start applied with great understanding and circumspection by the department. In 1984, for example, only 319 pupils out of a possible 1,7 million pupils were affected by this provision and referred to centres for adult education.
In spite of this we were nevertheless prepared to amend these regulations drastically in order to accommodate our pupils and parents once again. The situation at present is that pupils may continue their studies, regardless of their age. Nevertheless it is very interesting to note that age limits are still being presented to our pupils as an important grievance, even in areas in which these limits were never applied.
The hon member also referred to corporal punishment and to relations between teachers and schoolgirls. In regard to this matter the department has repeatedly emphasized its standpoint and pointed out that there are stringent regulations in this connection. The question of corporal punishment in particular has been recklessly held out to students and to scholars with the purpose of arousing emotions, without concrete evidence being presented or without any reaction whatsoever to our repeated appeals for incidents of this nature to be reported to the department. The same applies to the so-called molestation of school girls by teachers.
These are only a few examples of what has been done to deal with the grievances. Today I want to give hon members the assurance that we have adopted an accommodating approach throughout, we have spoken to people, we have listened to people and we have made concessions in order to be of assistance to people and organizations. It is not only I who say this. Earlier this afternoon the hon member quoted here from a publication what Monica Bot had had to say about Black education. She is a researcher at the University of Natal. In October 1984 she had the following to say about our handling of the grievances:
I shall allow Monica Bot to have the last word in this connection, Mr Chairman.
There have also been numerous demonstrations of the integrity of the officials of this department, of their dedication, of their goodwill and of their honesty, and also of the imaginativeness and daring with which they sought solutions; solutions which were also frequently found. I should like to mention a few examples in this connection.
Although the secondary schools in Atteridgeville were closed for several months, ongoing discussions were held; with pupils as well. Hon members opposite say that we should also talk to the pupils. I wonder what they think we are doing. Talks have been held with the pupils in order to normalize the situation. After the full co-operation of the community and the teachers had been obtained, the schools were reopened. Special arrangements were made to make up the time pupils had lost so that they did not have to lose an academic year.
Although the unrest in the Vaal Triangle did not originate in the schools, but because education was nervertheless seriously disrupted as a result, I decided after extensive talks with and on the insistence of the regional directors, school principals and teachers concerned, to request an authorative, impartial person to make a survey of all possible reasons that could be advanced to preclude the schools from opening in the normal way in January this year.
Prof Tjaart van der Walt, the chancellor of the Potchefstroom University, graciously agreed to undertake this investigation. A provisional report was submitted on 21 December 1984. Hon members will note that some officials of this department do not get a vacation. That report was submitted on 21 December 1984. After it had been thoroughly studied, an immediate start was made on implementing certain of its recommendations. A second, edited and expanded version of prof Van der Walt’s report was recently received and it will also be made available soon.
I should like to avail myself of this opportunity to convey our sincere gratitude and appreciation to Prof Van der Walt. He undertook this task during his vacation, he worked under difficult circumstances, and I think he succeeded in writing a brilliant report, in spite of having very little time at his disposal. It was a report which meant a great deal to us in our efforts to cope with our problems.
As a result of political disputes which orignated in Cradock, education there was totally disrupted for more than 15 months. Nevertheless not a single school was closed, and ongoing discussions were held with persons of all persuasions from that community. Attempts were made to normalize the situation. At present we can state with much gratitude that the schools are functioning again and that this community is again able to reap the benefits of co-operation and a reinstituted provision of education. I think we must say this: We find these events encouraging, for in my opinion it is an indication to us that many of South Africa’s problems can be solved by means of deliberation and dialogue.
After teacher training had been seriously disrupted at the Cape College of Education, everything possible was done, in spite of intimidation which occurred there, to have lectures resumed. Those people who have so much to say about the “Breakdown in communication” would do well to listen to this. More discussion is taking place, I think, than in many previous years. After talks were held with students and parents the present situation is that the students have returned to college and have resumed their studies. I can also say that we have personally devoted a great deal of urgent attention to this matter. On three occasions we talked to the parents about the situation at this college of education.
In addition to the numerous programmes aimed at eliminating historical and demographic backlogs and improving the quality of education, inter alia through the utilization of technology, there are at present several other training and motivational campaigns under way.
In this way, for example, countrywide courses are at present being offered by the department, with assistance from the private sector, in respect of local government. This also arose from Prof Van der Walt’s report. The purpose is to inform teachers, children and parents about the role and functions of local authorities. Several town and city councils have co-operated in this effort. The five White city councils of the Vaal Triangle have already sponsored such a seminar, and one wishes to thank them for their contributions in this connection. Last week Cradock also indicated that they would participate in this programme.
Today I want to make an appeal to all White town and city councils to follow the examples of the councils mentioned above, to display their goodwill and to extend the hand of friendship so that, in respect of this important matter, we can inform the Black inhabitants of our Black cities about the functioning of local government.
At present, with the assistance of the private sector, we are offering management courses for principals, senior teachers and inspectors to enhance the managerial skills and the standards of management and control at schools.
We are also engaged in presenting motivational courses for our senior pupils. This is being done by the private sector.
We have also established finishing schools for the purpose of dealing with the problems of children who, as a result of the unrest, were unable to write examinations, or who failed.
These are only a few examples which testify to a policy and an attitude of development, of upliftment, of co-operation and of communication.
We must also say this to one another today: The time, the money and the manpower expended in combating the boycotts is difficult to calculate. It is also important to remember that this time, this money and this manpower, if it had not been for the boycotts, could have been applied for the purpose of improving our education and enhancing the quality.
What can really be regarded as tragic is the fact that education is being misused today to attain political goals. The education of our children may never be allowed to become a political football, because if that were to happen, irreparable harm would not only be done to the individual pupil and the parent, but our country, the economy and every inhabitant of this country would also be prejudiced. Education boycotts lead to a serious setback for the true political progress of the people concerned. No community can hope to administer or to govern itself effectively if it does not provide the necessary foundations through the education and training of its people.
For that reason, and against this background, I want to say that we shall have to rely on the co-operation of the parent community, the media and the politicians. Therefore I want to make an appeal today to every colleague in this House and in the two other Houses of Parliament and to the media to give their full support to the active development and normalization of education. I do so because there is no doubt in my mind that the extent to which we in this country are going to succeed in preparing the youth of South Africa—White, Coloured and Black—to meet the difficult challenges of tomorrow, is going to determine South Africa’s future.
Mr Chairman, naturally it is with great interest that I have followed the speeches of both the hon the Deputy Minister who has just spoken, and the hon the Minister. As the hon member for Cape Town Gardens also said, I wish we had a lot more time to reflect calmly on these problems. It is, however quite clear that none of us in this House has the least doubt about the dedication and positive attitude displayed by the hon the Minister, the hon the Deputy Minister and the Department in the field of education. We profoundly appreciated that. I want to say this here and now. I do not want us to begin on a false basis as if on our side there is no realization of the extent and intensity of the problems, and the extent to which these gentlemen and the officials of the Department devote their energies day and night to solving those problems. For that they deserve our appreciation and gratitude.
I listened attentively to the hon the Deputy Minister, and I want to tell him here and now that it is a tragedy that in spite of all the enthusiasm, in spite of all the dedication, in spite of all the improvements brought about in Black education over the past few years, in spite of the picture he painted here, Black schools are in a condition of crisis in many parts of the country. This is undoubtedly the case. What I missed in the hon the Deputy Minister’s speech was, firstly, a full understanding of the image of Black education in the eyes of the Black community; secondly, an understanding of the fact that we are now reaping the harvest of the past; and, thirdly, an understanding that we cannot isolate Black children from the Black community and from the conditions that Black community is subject to.
Nevertheless, it was with great appreciation that I took cognizance of the statement the hon the Minister made here. I just want to say that I think that that statement ought to receive wide publicity. I even want to suggest that the hon the Minister consider taking professional advice on how best to convey to the Black population of South Africa the message he conveyed to this House. I do not think the channels of communication at our disposal will be adequately to convey the full implications of that message to the Black population.
As I have often said, it is no use merely talking about deeds. Allow me to point out two cases. The hon the Minister mentioned the standpoint presented here by the State President on the urgency of considering and giving effect to Black aspirations in the political sphere.
I spoke about the fact that we cannot isolate Black children in the black communities. In my honest opinion, Black education is one of the fundamental problems. We shall never succeed in black education unless we find some solution to the political problems of the Black people in South Africa. That is correct, because it is as plain as a pikestaff. Until such time as we tell the Black communities in South Africa: “Look, this is what we envisage”, without consulting them, however, we cannot solve these problems in South Africa.
What I want to say, therefore, is that it is not enough to say this. The hon the Minister and Deputy Minister will agree with me that it is not enough to say this. We shall have to act and offer proof that we are in earnest in this regard. [Interjections.]
The hon the Minister and Deputy Minister referred, too, to the Government’s decision to implement parity. We accept this and are grateful for it. It is a declaration of intent that, I think, ought to receive wide publicity. I want to reiterate, however, that it would make so much more sense—and I understand the problems involved—if we could say that we wanted to reach that parity on this scale, in this way, in the next five, seven or 10 years. We must come forward with concrete suggestions and ideas, not with empty words, because that does not help. [Interjections.]
This is the case, and we are aware that there are elements that misuse Black school-children and education. I do not think we should discuss the problem of education being misused for political ends. During my schooldays our education in our schools was probably also used for political ends. We cannot be honest with ourselves if we close our eyes to that reality, because it could not be otherwise. Therefore I want to reiterate that we have to begin, whether we want to or not, by giving attention to those aspects of society in South Africa. I do not want to say that it is going to be easy or that we shall solve the problems all of a sudden, because we are dealing with fundamental problems.
Allow me to reveal just one fact, and this is why I want to emphasize the urgency of these things. For 16 years, from 1956 to 1972, as the hon the Minister and Deputy Minister are aware, expenditure on Black education was pegged at R13 million. True, I am aware that the Government donated additional amounts, but those youths who are wandering around the streets today and are the forerunners of the boycott campaign and that sort of thing, must have been at school at that time. However, we were too dullwitted and stupid to realize what we were doing when, in terms of the Exchequer and Audit Act, we pegged that amount at R13 million for 16 years, and now we are having to pay for our stupidity. Let us at least, then, learn from the past and determine now what we are doing today, which could, tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, create climate different to this image created here. I am including the Act of 1952, as well as the remarks made at that time—and the whole complex of measures to which the Black population is subject.
In this connection I do want to tell the hon the Minister and the hon the Deputy Minister, in all humility, that they mention certain things that are very important, but we shall have to think much more radically—and by radically I do not mean in a revolutionary way—and drastically on the position of the Black man in this society if we ever want to solve the problems before us.
Let me repeat what I have already said here on many occasions: If we do not begin with the removal of the influx control measures, we are not going to get any further because we have a perpetual source of irritation and friction that will render the best efforts of the hon the Minister and the hon the Deputy Minister totally futile.
My plea to the hon the Minister is, therefore, the following: If they want to provide the service they can provide and are trying to provide in the field of Black education, if they want to provide such a service successfully for everyone’s sake, it is essential for these two gentlemen to approach the Cabinet and to the committees on which they serve and say that we shall have to consider in depth all these things that touch and affect Black people adversely, and influence their whole attitude towards us and this situation.
May I, in conclusion, make just one observation. Communication has been discussed. The problems we have—I certainly do not wish to suggest that this is how the Department or the hon the Minister goes about things—are often that we communicate with those people who are not accepted as leaders by the Blacks themselves. It is an unfortunate situation caused by the mixing of politics and other things. The first step we shall have to take is to determine who the community leaders are and who can communicate with those community leaders. That is the first priority that I want to suggest for the solution of our problems in this connection.
Mr Chairman, in the course of my speech I shall probably touch on certain aspects the hon member Prof Olivier mentioned. I should also like to react to the observation he made to the hon the Minister and the hon the Deputy Minister about the fact that there was great zeal and dedication in the Department. In that respect, in particular, I want to support him. I think the hon the Minister, the hon the Deputy Minister and their entire staff are showing great zeal and dedication and working hard to make a success of their Department. We wish them, too, all the best.
Regarding the remark the hon member Prof Olivier made when he said that we had to seek solutions in the political sphere and that action would have to be taken, I want to admit that he is correct in that respect. I want to point out to him, however, that the State President also addressed an invitation to the leaders of the Opposition parties, to hold discussions with him to find a solution for South Africa’s Blacks in the political sphere too. Therefore, work is being done in that sphere. Concerted efforts are therefore being made to find solutions in this sphere. We realize it is a problem in South Africa.
I should like, however, to address myself in more detail to the Youth Year 1985. We must regard this year as the beginning of a sustained concentration on the youth to involve them in matters that concern them. The keywords in youth programmes should be, firstly, participation and involvement; secondly, development; and thirdly, peace. Each of these keywords could give rise to long debate. Task groups established by the Department of Education and Training, should give the lead to schools regarding ways to activate and motivate Black youth to become involved; that is, to participate in striving towards peace and prosperity, and to develop. If the Black youth become closely involved with their own development, they can play a responsible role in community development. If idealism could be cultivated, the youth would better prepare themselves for a career at a school level. To combat poverty and illiteracy, job opportunities should be created so that the educated youth can serve the country productively. If the youth became involved in productive industry, this would engender pride and self-respect that would lead to progress and peace. A love of peace could be born of the natural pride one has for what is one’s own, if one could establish one’s position in the world by one’s labours.
All school-going pupils, teachers and school principals are involved as target groups in this Youth Year; so, too, are all students and staff at teachers’ training colleges, technical colleges and technikons that fall under the control of the Department of Education and Training. Some of the Department’s aims in giving education its aspect of wholeness are: To teach pupils how to spend their free time positively and productively; to make them aware of nature and of their surroundings; to emphasize the promotion of culture and to cultivate positive leadership. To help achieve these aims, educational tours, inter alia, are being arranged. These tours are of increasing importance because their value is being realized to an ever greater extent.
In the area of sport, too, various sports are offered and the Sports Council, which was established in 1984 to serve as an umbrella and co-ordinating controlling body, has already achieved very good results. For example, a sponsor who is to donate R40 000 annually for the administration of the soccer competition by these schools has been obtained. It is a pity that as a result of the unrest only four of the seven regional winners in netball could participate in the South African championships in October 1984.
The Youth Activities Division, which has been in existence since 1980, has as its objective the open-air education and leadership training of teachers and pupils. The teachers who attended this course testified to positive results. The pupils come back from these courses more aware of nature and the environment, while the student councils function better after having received training in leadership. These courses place a strong emphasis on Bible study in order to incline people more towards God and His Word.
In spite of all the Department’s attempts to orientate and positively influence pupils in schools as far as the RSA is concerned, we still find unrest in our Black residential areas, and in certain sections of our country in particular. During this unrest it is significant that the youths of school-going age are participating extensively in this unrest. It is alarming to see the incidents of unrest in the Eastern Cape which are so topical at this stage, and witness the involvement of school-going children. On 17 April 1985 three schools were set alight, two in New Brighton and one in Fort Beaufort. The damage to these schools—on this day alone—amounted to R10 800. What is even more disturbing is the fact that the Johnson Mangwanga School was stormed by about 15 Blacks, children being chased from their classrooms with sticks. Of greater concern, however, is that at midnight, in the kwaNobhle Black township in Uitenhage, police had to disperse about 300 Black children between the ages of 10 and 15 years. From this it seems quite clear that the parents of Black youth have no control over them. I maintain that the adult Blacks are scared of the Black youth and therefore do not take any action to counteract this sort of irresponsible behaviour. The time has come for Black parents to exercise parental authority over their children.
The damage caused to Black schools by Black youths creates endless problems for those same school-going Black children. Black adults will therefore have to intervene and bring this unrest in their residential towns under control so that their children may undergo the necessary training. Only then will they be able to make a positive contribution to the labour market in South Africa. Black adults will have to help the Department of Education and Training to protect buildings and, in particular, schools. They themselves will, therefore, have to start taking action against agitators in the Black residential areas. We surely all wish for peace and quiet to come soon to Black residential areas. Only then will children be able to go to school, in peace and quiet, to receive an education and to further the excellent efforts being made and good word being done by the Department of Education and Training. The Police will always be there, and they will also be available to help keep unrest under control. Black adults who also live for peace and prosperity in South Africa can support them in their task, if they were only prepared to take action against the youth.
Mr Chairman, I should like to try, in a few minutes, to reply to the main features of the debate since there is not really much time left for me to reply because of the way the time has been allocated between the two Votes.
I want to begin by expressing my sincere thanks to my hon colleague, the Deputy Minister of Education and of Co-operation, for the way in which he conveyed his capacity for work and his enthusiasm in his speech as well. I want to point out to hon members of the House in particular that the actions, the communication, the negotiations and the activities which he described were to a large extent attributable to his initiative and to his forcefulness. Our country is deeply indebted to this hon colleague of mine—he calls himself a young colleague, but I think he is mistaken if he thinks that because he has a young wife, he, with his bald pate, is also young. [Interjections.] However he has, whatever the reason for it may be, the energy of youth, and our country is greatly indebted to him for the work he has done in recent times, together with experts from the department and with Black education and community leaders, in defusing the situation.
I should also like to thank the hon member for Standerton for his contribution, but particularly for his fine remarks towards the end when he presented to us the delicacy of the human hand as an object for ennoblement by education. The hon member for Gezina expertly spelt out the differentiation between the various types of education offered. The hon veteran member for Kimberley North elucidated with particular insight and thoroughness the comprehensive teacher training programmes. It was a very important speech which explained a very important aspect of the high priority activities of this department. The hon member for Parys emphasized the importance of the computer and technology in education. They hon member for Port Elizabeth gave an elucidation and a fine illustration of the progress being made in the field of tertiary education at universities and technikons. The hon member for Maraisburg was particularly concerned with the importance of discipline and the maintenance of Christian values, and the hon member for Losberg’s contribution dealt with the department’s youth activities, and particularly with Youth Year.
†Before I deal with a few points raised by hon member in the Opposition benches just allow me to point out, linking up with the speech of the hon member for Potgietersrus, that the remark is often made that there is a great discrepancy between the per capita expenditure on the education for Blacks and that for Whites. This is of course true as far as the school level of education is concerned. However, people forget that parity has already been reached in respect of the per capita expenditure at university level.
I have here an extract from a reply by my hon colleague on the per capita expenditure of the universities falling under the Committee of University Principals from which it appears that it varies roughly from R4 500 to R6 400 per capita. In the case of the Black residential universities it also varies from about R4 500 to R6 000per capita.
The universities for which my department is responsible are now subsidized according to exactly the same subsidy formula which applies to the other universities, with the difference that the universities for Blacks and their communities are required to contribute from their own funds only two thirds of that which is required of the older established universities falling under the Committee of University Principals. This contribution of only two thirds of the normal university contribution is being phased in the case of running expenses over a period of six years, and in the case of capital expenditure, over a period of 11 years. I would therefore like to emphasize that the commitment and the seriousness of the department and the Government in promoting equal opportunities in education have already come to fruition and produced practical, concrete results at tertiary level.
I would like to proceed to bring together the contributions from two extremes in the opposition benches. I would like to refer to a remark by the hon member for Cape Town Gardens where he said that the Blacks should be given the education that they want, and a remark of the hon member for Germiston District when she said: “Ons moet die Swartes nie dwing om by ons onderwyspatroon aan te pas nie, maar om by hul eie te begin.” I basically agree with the gist of these two statements which is that the content of Black education should primarily be determined, characterized and described by Black educationists, though under an overall umbrella of universal standards in South Africa for which the Department of National Education is now responsible. I accept that Blacks should be given the education that they want; that—as the hon member for Germiston District also implied—they should not be forced to a pattern which they do not find acceptable.
I would therefore like to reaffirm the commitment I made in my policy statement earlier this afternoon that it is a high priority of my department to involve Black educational leadership in the policy committees and the planning committees of the department under the Council of Education and Training, and also to bring about in a planned way upward mobility for Black educationists in the staff echelons of this department.
The hon member for Cape Town Gardens also asked why the ratio of teachers to pupils in secondary schools had deteriorated in the past year. This is because of the transition from the old system of a two-year period of post-matric training as a minimum to a three-year period of post-matric training for secondary teachers. As a result of this there was a temporary drop in the production of secondary school teachers between 1982 and 1983 so that in 1983 only 86 teachers completed the secondary teaching diploma. However, the matter adjusted itself and in 1984 the production of final year students for the secondary teaching diploma rose to 756. This is expected to increase to 850 in the course of this year and, according to the target planning of the department, 2 000 teachers for the secondary schools with at least a three-year period of post-matric training will be produced both in the department’s education colleges and at Vista University.
It can be stated that the ratio of teachers to pupils in secondary schools will be steadily improving from 1986 onwards and we hope to achieve a 1:30 ratio in the foreseeable future.
I would like to give the assurance—I think this has been spelt out in some detail in the contribution of the hon member for Kimberley North—that the department is planning to improve the ratio of teachers to pupils so as to achieve a target of 1:30 in the secondary schools and 1:35 in the primary schools. We hope this target will be within reach by the middle 1990s. Here I would like to mention in particular the important contribution that Vista University is making in this regard.
I would like to move on to touch upon the issue raised by the hon member for King William’s Town as well as the hon member for Albany, namely the importance of secondary education in rural areas. In this regard I would like to point out that since last year’s debate the department has introduced some relief in adding std 6 and std 7 classes to 93 rural primary schools to enable pupils to continue with their education up to std 7 without leaving their home area.
We also accept the need to expand secondary education in the rural areas. A task group which has been assigned the job of investigating this matter—the hon member for Albany has referred to this—is composed of a wide variety of experts including representatives of Atasa, the Association of Inspectors, educationists from the faculties of the universities for which my department is responsible, as well as representatives from other areas such as the agricultural sector, the HSRC, the Council of Education and Training, the mining world, industry, and also some people who are at present involved in rural education. This task group has the assignment of studying world tendencies in respect of rural secondary education in developing areas, of making a demographic analysis of the situation actually pertaining, and then of studying specific aspects affecting rural education in order to improve the situation as a matter of great urgency.
I should also like to refer briefly to a remark made by the hon member for Pine-town, insisting on a single education Ministry, although he conceded that the new Ministry of National Education has the potential and the possibility of providing this single, co-ordinating Ministry which will be able to monitor the standards, provided it is given the necessary teeth. The necessary teeth have already been provided in that the Committee of Education Structures, which presents the viewpoint of the professions and the departments with regard to conditions of service and salaries, has as from May last year, been composed of representatives of all population groups. The salary improvements that were introduced at the end of last year were in fact a joint effort, representative of and supported unanimously by the educational leadership in the Black, Brown, Indian and White profession. So, too, my colleague the hon the Minister of National Education will be tabling a Bill in the near future to introduce a national council on the certification of standards. All certificates of public examinations will in future be issued on the authority of that council. This council, again, will be representative of the whole educational community.
Therefore, I believe that this Government has in fact produced the results which were called for by the De Lange Report, and that in this way we trust that the differentiated education departments will be brought into a pattem where there will be participation for them in the setting and the monitoring of standards in terms of financing, staffing policy, conditions of service, salaries, professional registration and in terms of setting the standards of syllabuses, examinations and certification.
You still have to sell it to the community.
Yes, we are going to sell it to the community and we hope that the hon member will assist us in doing so.
May I just make one brief remark with regard to the hon member for Albany’s question as to whether there are any State-aided boarding schools at the secondary level. There are in fact 18 boarding schools. I agree that these are not enough and this aspect will form part of the investigation to which I have just referred.
*Finally I should like to refer to the speech made by the hon member Prof Olivier, in which all he actually did was to emphasize—although I had also emphasized this—that educational reform must be accompanied by reform on the political level and on the general level of communities. However the hon member did this in a way which tried to imply that he knew this better than I, because I had been wrong for a long time and he had always been right. In regard to the principle, however, I think we are in complete agreement. I do not think that his emphasis was at variance with what we had basically said.
Finally I wish to thank all members once again for their contributions to this debate. Furthermore I wish to convey the gratitude of this House, in advance, to the department and its staff, as well as to the large number of teachers, for the extremely important task they will continue to perform in the interests of education and the development of our Black communities.
Vote agreed to.
Vote No 14—“Co-operation and Development”:
Mr Chairman, I request the privilege of the first half-hour.
I should like to thank the chief spokesman and the Chief Whip of the Official Opposition for the arrangement they made enabling me to participate in the debate at this juncture, and at the same time I want to offer the hon the Minister my apologies for not being able to be present here tomorrow.
I think this is the first major debate we have had since the hon the Minister was appointed to this extremely important portfolio, and I want to congratulate him on his appointment. I belive that this subject is the most important matter we can discuss here because the future of all the peoples in South Africa will be decided in this area. While I was congratulating the hon the Minister, I wondered what I should wish him, because he has a difficult task. I could not help thinking back to 1960 when we, as young people in Pretoria, while the Cottesloe Conference was taking place, felt that something had to be done to counteract the whole business. We then realized that we were inexperienced and needed guidance and so we approached the idealistic, competent young Prof Gerrit Viljoen to instruct and to help us. We absorbed his knowledge and idealism like sponges, to such an extent that today we still adhere unwaveringly and unshakeably to those ideals we strove for at the time. What is important, however, is that another person at that conference, who was a highly esteemed students minister, came to hold other convictions, and a new Beyers Naudé was bom. The old Beyers Naudé had been completely acceptable, the new was totally unrecognizable and was in fact objectionable. Since then, however, a new Gerrit Viljoen has also been bom. So while I was wondering what I should wish him today, I realized that I had to tell him that I hoped, for the sake of his grandchildren and his people, that the ideals of the old Gerrit Viljoen would triumph over the ideals of the new Gerrit Viljoen.
However, it is the new Gerrit Viljoen who is here now, and I therefore move:
Initially I felt that I should move that the amount be reduced even further, but since deductions are made, I did not want the hon the Minister to have to pay in, and I therefore made sure that he at least had something left over.
The two important aspects of this Vote at present are, in the first place, the widespread anarchy and unrest which is prevailing in the Black residential areas of South Africa, and, in the second place, the constitutional reforms that are being envisaged by this Government.
As far as the unrest is concerned, I want to suggest that there is a very clear pattern which can be unmistakeably observed, namely that there is a large measure of peace and tranquillity in the Black states, and that the unrest is confined to the Black residential areas in the RSA. There are two very important reasons for this major difference. In the first place the satisfaction of self-realization within their own state in their own fatherland under their own government is being experienced in the Black states. In the second place attempts are also being made to cause unrest there—we read about this regularly—but that unrest is effectively and quickly stamped out by the instigators’ fellow countrymen. It is nipped in the bud, with the absolute minimum loss of life and damage to property, while the opposite is the case in the Republic of South Africa. Here the people find themselves under the jurisdiction of a foreign government, which is now an integrated government, and the unrest is not always quelled by the instigators’ fellow countrymen. That is why one asks what steps the Government is taking to cope with this situation. I put it now to the hon the Minister—and I am not in any way doing this out of spite, I am doing it with sorrow in my heart—that the measures he is adopting, are not effective. They are not effective because the unrest and the anarchy is escalating.
The question now is what measures the hon the Minister is adopting. I believe that the measures the hon the Minister is adopting amount to concessions and to promises of ever more concessions. This has precisely the wrong effect. The result this has is that the unrest and anarchy continues to escalate. In this respect I should just like to mention a single excellent example to the hon the Minister.
The example is that of the entire question of Crossroads. The illegal squatter camp at Crossroads came into existence in 1975—more than ten years ago now. Between 1978 and 1979 arrangements were made for the resettlement of those people elsewhere. They were to have been resettled in certain states. Subsequently the presence here of some of those people was legalized, and arrangements were made for them to go and live in Khayelitsha. Arrangements were also made for all the people from Langa, Nyanga and Guguletu to settle in Khayelitsha. The intention was even that all the Black people in the Western Cape should settle in Khayelitsha, and that there would therefore be one Black city here.
Since the hon the Minister took over this portfolio, he created the impression on a tremendous scale that in this respect concessions were being made on an unprecedented scale in South Africa. To counteract the rioting, the hon the Minister announced in the first place that the people from Nyanga, Langa and Guguletu would remain where they were; that they were no longer going to be moved to Khayelitsha. In the second place the hon the Minister announced that the people of Langa, Nyanga and Guguletu could acquire 99-year leasehold rights, as well as the right to own land.
Furthermore, the hon the Minister announced that Crossroads was going to be upgraded. However, the unrest did not subside; on the contrary, it increased in leaps and bounds. The hon the Minister then announced that illegal persons from Crossroads could now be resettled here on 8 000 plots on site C, right next door to Khayelitsha.
What is an illegal person?
Mr Chairman, the hon member for Bryanston does not know what is legal and what is illegal in any case. That is why he asks such nonsensical questions. [Interjections.]
I really want to know what an illegal person is.
Ultimately the hon the Minister said that those people who were illegally present in Crossroads, could also acquire the right to own land there. Mr Chairman, please take note of where the concessions began. At first they were in connection with a single Black city in the Western Cape, but they continued until all the people who settled here illegally, could simply continue to live in Crossroads, and until the people from Langa, Nyanga and Guguletu could also simply continue to live where they were. Less than two years ago, I remember, we told the Government that this was precisely the pattern that was going to be adopted. What has happened here as a result? An excessive influx of people who came here illegally occurred.
During the same period the hon the Minister announced many things which were aimed at calming down the Black people. He said that the system of influx control was going to be reviewed; that the question of equal citizenship for all people was going to be examined. The hon the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs said in a foreign television programme that a general franchise in South Africa was on its way. South Africa’s ambassador in London, Dr Worrall, reiterated this. He also said that South Africa was going to acquire a general franchise.
The State President announced that co-ordinating political structures were going to be established in South Africa, which were also going to include Black people. He went on to announce that collective structures, which would include the Black states, were on their way. It was also announced that the central business areas were being thrown open, and during the same period it was announced that South Africa had withdrawn from Angola. At the same time we also heard that South Africa had sided with the Frelimo regime in Mozambique, and it was also announced that the ANC was being invited to sit down around the same conference table and deliberate on the political future of South Africa. [Interjections.]
At the same time it was also announced that a forum would be established at which this dialogue could take place. [Interjections.] It was also announced that the Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act and section 16 of the Immorality Act were being repealed.
What is more, we get the astonishing phenomenon of a Free State MEC who says that a member of the Cabinet, Minister Hendrickse, is an enemy of the Government. What kind of admission is that? That a government has appointed an enemy to its Cabinet? It is no wonder that the absolutely ineradicable impression has been confirmed by the hon Minister that he has no control, that he has capitulated, that he has been taken in tow and that he is entirely incapable of controlling the situation.
That is why I say to the hon Minister—it is not a pleasure for me to do so—that I long for the old Gerrit Viljoen who inspired us with that idealism. I wish that person could be resurrected.
Chief Minister Buthelezi said that the cause of this unrest was that the young Black children were being misused. Many speakers said the same thing today. It is true. This entire unrest situation has an ideological basis. The Sowetan wrote in an editorial that the Police should come and restore law and order. There are hon friends here who say that the name of the Police stinks in the nostrils of the Black people, but the Sowetan asked the Police to restore law and order. They said that such anarchy could not be allowed to continue. They are pleading, but the Government is powerless. Its measures do not work.
The Government ought to look back because similar attempts were made in the past, and similar attempts are being made in the Black states, but in the Black states they are being dealt with effectively. The 1976 riots were only effectively quelled in October 1977 when the organizers and instigators and anarchists were locked up after a country-wide round-up was organized and the head of the organism was chopped off and put into the freezer.
That is why I want to tell the government that they will not succeed in quelling this situation if they do not cut off the head of this monster. If Dr Beyers Naudé, Dr Allan Boesak, Bishop Tutu and people like that are part of this head, the Government must not hesitate to lock them up and isolate them from the organism which is putting South Africa to the torch.
The Black councils in South Africa are completely at the mercy of the anarchists. They are impotent. That is why I said to the hon Minister that he will not succeed in quelling this situation before he has given these people some potency, before he has equipped them with people who are their fellow countrymen and who can deal with the anarchists according to their own nature and norms, and restrain them. That is why the hon Minister will have to make it possible for them to do so.
Surely we have seen, in these times, the ugliest and cruellest occurrences. Councillors were burnt to death. People danced on their corpses. Afterwards the corpses were dug up and burnt again. It is horrifying. That is why the Government will not be able to leave them at the mercy of these people.
As regards constitutional matters, the Government has, as far as the Indians and the Coloureds are concerned, taken the NRP’s policy and pulled the rug out from under its feet. Now the Government is taking over the PFP policy and pulling the rug out from under its feet as well. [Interjections.]
I say this because it was always the policy of the Government that some or other form of confederation should develop in South Africa among the various states of Southern Africa. This was and is consequently being established. A confederation requires one thing, and that is a number of different sovereign states, each having its own citizenship while the citizens of each state have their own franchise.
We now hear that when the states are going to become independent in future, they need not necessarily lose their South African citizenship. Consequently there will be common citizenship. Yet that cannot be; then that confederation is out of the question. A general franchise makes a confederation out of the question. What then remains, is a confederation.
We are prepared to accept what the State President said, namely that they were not going to bring in the Black people by way of a fourth chamber. [Interjections.]
The State President also announced that collective structures which included the Black states were also on their way, Black states with the same citizenship as South Africa. Such a collective structure is one thing only, and that is a federation.
Recently the hon the Minister granted an important interview to the periodical Leadership. In it he was asked why the forum was not being made constitutional. He then said that it could happen in future with specific reference to the Black people outside the national states. I want to tell the hon the Minister that we have had experience of this Government. In accordance with the techniques with which the Government had adopted from its American instructors, something innocent is established so that people can get used to it. Then it is suddenly given potency. This forum which is being established and in which people will sit down around a conference table and discuss matters, is an innocent little thing, much like the Multi-Party Conference. Then suddenly it is given potency and it becomes the Government of South Africa.
I want to say that the Government is dealing with nothing else but PFP policy, because the Government has now accepted their federation. If the Government says they are going to establish collective structures and there is no separate citizenship or separate franchise but there is common franchise, then the Government has accepted a federation. All the Government did was to replace the PFP’s national convention with a forum.
As they did, the Government also decided that the ANC could participate. [Interjections.] Yes, Sir, the Government said that if the ANC would renounce violence, it could participate in the political decision-making process. I want to say that the Government had already decided that Swapo can take over South West Africa under Resolution 435. They have already decided that. They said the ANC could participate. If the Government said the ANC could participate, it also means that it can become the government. The hon the Minister is shaking his head. I want to tell him we will not believe him, no matter how vigorously he shakes his head. [Interjections.]
Order! We cannot carry on like this.
Let me just indicate why it would not be advisable to believe the hon the Minister. He went to South West Africa to implement Prog policy in a National Party way. Now he is implementing Prog policy in a Prog way in South Africa. Therefore he must not expect that he is going to be able to fob us off in that way.
One can see that you were on the same platform as Jaap.
Yes, and I shall rather share a platform with him than with that hon member. [Interjections.]
Let me indicate what the difference is between this party and the party opposite. That party through the Minister of Foreign Affairs, came forward and told us that separate development in South Africa had failed. We say that separate development has succeeded. The Minister is shaking his head. We, however, claim that separate development has succeeded. The first piece of evidence indicating that it has succeeded is the fact that there is peace in the Black states today. This is an important piece of evidence to prove that it has succeeded. The second piece of evidence I want to present is the constitutional development that is taking place there. The third piece of evidence I wish to present …
To whom is this attributable?
I know, Sir. Do hon members know which Government did it? It was the Government of which the old Gerrit Viljoen was a supporter, not the new one. It was the Government of the old Gerrit Viljoen. I would say that the economic development which is taking place there, is another item of proof. Yet another is the fact that the Black people in their own states have increased far more rapidly than they have increased in the White areas.
Whom are you defending now?
I am defending the policy of separate development, which that hon member rejects. [Interjections.] I want to tell the hon Minister that between 1960 and 1970 and 1970 and 1980 the Black people in White areas increased by 15 to 16% while they increased by between 65% and 70% in the national states. This is evidence to prove that the policy was successful. That is why the difference between us and the party opposite is that that party may now come along and state that community is the foundation on which its policy is based.
Business interrupted in accordance with Standing Order No 19.
Progress reported and leave granted to sit again.
The House adjourned at