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Educational reforms and curriculum transformation in post-apartheid South Africa


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Educational reforms and curriculum transformation have been a priority in South Africa since the establishment of the Government of National Unity in 1994. Education is critical in redressing the injustices of apartheid colonialism which created an inequitable and fragmented education system. Factors such as school access, governance, curriculum, teacher deployment and financial resources have also gone through the education policy mill. While relatively impressive progress is observed regarding legislative interventions, policy development, curriculum reform and the implementation of new ways of delivering education, many challenges remain. Key among the challenges relates to the quality of education, twenty two years since the dawn of democracy. To contribute to the debate on educational reforms and pertaining to the quality of education, the paper discusses the various curriculum reforms of South Africa’s education sector and provides a brief evaluation of the trends in policies affecting equity and quality in the South African education environment. The paper finds that the quality of education is critical for many reasons
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Environmental Economics, Volume 7, Issue 2, 2016
Vusi Gumede (South Africa), Mduduzi Biyase (South Africa)
Educational reforms and curriculum transformation
in post-apartheid South Africa
Educational reforms and curriculum transformation have been a priority in South Africa since the establishment of the
Government of National Unity in 1994. Education is critical in redressing the injustices of apartheid colonialism which
created an inequitable and fragmented education system. Factors such as school access, governance, curriculum, teach-
er deployment and financial resources have also gone through the education policy mill. While relatively impressive
progress is observed regarding legislative interventions, policy development, curriculum reform and the implementa-
tion of new ways of delivering education, many challenges remain. Key among the challenges relates to the quality of
education, twenty two years since the dawn of democracy. To contribute to the debate on educational reforms and
pertaining to the quality of education, the paper discusses the various curriculum reforms of South Africa’s education
sector and provides a brief evaluation of the trends in policies affecting equity and quality in the South African educa-
tion environment. The paper finds that the quality of education is critical for many reasons.
Keywords: National Income Dynamics Study, Pooled OLS, fixed effect and random effect.
JEL Classification: C31, I21, J31.
Introduction ©
There have been some commendable changes in the
education landscape in South Africa since 1994. How-
ever, as Gumede (2013) argues, there remain policy
questions that are yet to be addressed. The recent poli-
cy interventions in the form of the 2013 White Paper
for Post-School Education and the various curricula
reforms are part of an effort to address the policy is-
sues that need attention. There are new challenges,
particularly those associated with the Rhodes Must
Fall and Fees Must Fall movement, at least the higher
education level. One of policy issues that has not been
sufficiently addressed has to do with the quality of
education in post-apartheid South Africa. As Msila
(2007) argues, education was used as a political tool to
divide society and create a certain form of identity
among learners during apartheid dispensation. Tabata
(1997) makes a point that Africans were subjected to
what was known as ‘Native Education’ under the Ban-
tu Education Act of 1959 during the apartheid system.
Therefore, the post-apartheid educational reforms and
curriculum transformation are/were a direct response
to apartheid curricula that were described as authority-
driven and elitist (Jansen and Taylor, 2003, p. 37).
The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa
(Act 106 of 1996) provides the basis for educational
reforms and curriculum transformation in South
Africa’s education system. According to Burke
(1995, p. 3), the beginning of the process of curricu-
lum change existed in the manifestation of concerns,
needs and dissatisfactions of curriculum practices of
© Vusi Gumede, Mduduzi Biyase, 2016.
Vusi Gumede, Ph.D., Professor, Head of Thabo Mbeki African Leader-
ship Institute, University of South Africa, South Africa.
Mduduzi Biyase, Ph.D. Candidate, Lecturer in Economics and Econo-
metrics, University of Johannesburg, South Africa.
the time, creating a need for variation. Malan (2000)
argues that education is aimed at creating teaching
and learning environments that would bring about
desired changes in learners, whether to be more
knowledgeable, better skilled or to influence their
attitudes and values positively. The very essence of
teaching and learning is to determine to what extent
learners have acquired the intended competences
(Malan, 2000, p. 01). Jansen and Taylor (2003) ar-
gue that, in the main, education in post-apartheid
South Africa is designed to equitably produce in-
formed, productive and progressive citizens who
value and practice the principles enshrined in the
Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. As
Gumede (2013, p. 77) concludes, “attention should
be paid to improving not only access to education but
also to the quality of education. This is particularly
important with regard to teacher training, the curricu-
lum, access to information for parents and lear-
ners…” This paper deals with quality of education.
The next Section briefly discusses educational re-
forms and curriculum transformation processes
since 1994. It looks at the specific changes in curri-
culum, in policy terms. It is, then, followed by a
Section dealing with effects of educational reforms.
It examines the quality of education in South Africa
and its effects using the National Income Dynamics
Study – The National Income Dynamics Study
(NIDS) is a longitudinal survey and/or panel study
whose data are collected at 2-year intervals since
2008. The paper, then, concludes.
Educational reforms and curriculum transfor-
mation processes since 1994
The main reforms pursued since were institutional.
For instance, 19 departments of education had to be
rationalized into a single national department of
Environmental Economics, Volume 7, Issue 2, 2016
education and nine provincial departments of educa-
tion. There were also numerous policy reforms,
mainly to ensure access to education by those who
were previously excluded. The focus of this paper is
on curricula, as far as quality of education is con-
cerned. Perhaps, the ideal starting point in discuss-
ing curricula changes in post-apartheid South Africa
relates to the introduction of Curriculum 2005, also
known as the ‘Outcomes Based Education (OBE)
curriculum’. Harden, Crosby and Davis (1999, p. 8)
suggest that, in outcome-based education approach-
es the end product defines process. Therefore, an
outcome-based education program can be summed
up as results-oriented thinking, which is the opposite
of input-based education where the emphasis is on
the educational process (Davis, 2003).
Many countries introduced OBE in the 1980s and
1990s for different reasons, especially at a time
where there was increasing call for accountability
(Ramoroka, 2007, p. 46). According to Davis
(2003), South Africa developed its own OBE model.
South Africa’s Ministry of Education launched the
OBE system in the year 1997. The OBE was said to
be concentrated on the learner and the outcomes the
learner should be able to achieve. In the OBE mo-
del, every learner was respected as an individual,
and no learner, regardless of race, ethnicity and cul-
tural background, was deemed better than the other.
Everyone was accommodated in their learning envi-
ronments (Ramoroka, 2007, p. 47). Due to the chal-
lenges that were identified as constraining OBE, the
National Curriculum Statement 2002 (NCS) was
introduced. Contrary to the OBE curricula, the NCS
curricula required that all learners in grades 10, 11
and 12 do a minimum of 7 subjects, as opposed to
the 6 subjects. In the NCS curricula, learners are
expected to learn a minimum of two South African
languages. In addition to the two languages, learners
are expected to make a compulsory choice between
Mathematics and Mathematical Literacy, and they
are expected to study Life Orientation.
In year 2000, a Ministerial Committee was ap-
pointed to review the progress and effectiveness of
the curriculum (Department of Education, 2002).
According to the Department of Education (2004),
the brief of the review was the structure and design
of the curriculum, teacher orientation, training and
development, learning support materials, provincial
support to teachers in schools and implementation
time frames. The Ministerial Committee recom-
mended that the curriculum be streamlined, and that
it should be modified to make it more accessible to
the educators – amendments were, then, effected in
the National Curriculum Statement (NCS) 2002,
culminating to the Revised National Curriculum
Statement. Bynard (2011, p. 61) had opined that the
NCS2002 placed a heavy burden on the educators
who were to become the ultimate drivers of educa-
tional transformation in schools. Badgelat (2012, p.
10) supports Bynard that “not only were teachers
inadequately trained, but there was also a shortage
of resources and lack of support from government”.
Maphalala (2006, p. 66) also argues that a lack of
preparation among educators was also a problem in
adequately implementing the NCS curricula.
From the Revised National Curriculum Statement,
the Curriculum Assessment Policy Statement
(CAPS) was introduced in the year 2012. Pinnock
(2011) argues that CAPS is not a new curriculum; it
is rather an amendment to NCS. As Du Plessis (2013)
puts it, much of the debate around CAPS is about
whether or not it is an amendment, repackaging or re-
curriculation. Indeed, NCS and CAPS have similar
rationales when it comes to situating the curriculum
within the aims of the South African constitution
and both NCS and CAPS contain a similar list of
values (including social justice, human rights, envi-
ronmental awareness and respect for people from
diverse cultural, religious and ethnic backgrounds).
Effects of educational reforms since 1994
There has been a good deal of work that investigates
the impact of educational reforms on earnings in par-
ticular, since 1994, in South Africa. These studies
include the works of Heckman et al. (1995), Case and
Yogo (1999); Keswell and Poswell (2004), Aromolan
(2006, 2004) and several other scholars.
The return to education literature has suggested
several measures of quality of schooling or educa-
tion. These measures can be grouped into two broad
categories: output measures and input measures.
The most common proxies for input measures are
expenditure per pupil, the pupil-teacher ratio, teach-
er’s experience, education levels and teacher-test
scores. Output measures are usually proxies by test
scores of individual students – direct outcomes of
education. Several authors have used the input
measure such as pupil-teacher ratios (see Card and
Krueger (1992), Case and Yogo (1999), Heckman et
al. (1995), Dearden et al. (2002)). While others have
used cognitive ability (see Castex et al. (2011), Blau
et al. (2005), Aslam et al (2008), Lee et al (2013)
and Kavuma (2015)), some authors in this field such
as Branson and Leibbrandt (2013b) have used both
input and output measures.
A recent study by Branson and Leibbrandt (2013)
used a merged data (i.e., National Income Dynamics
Study, the School Register of Needs Survey 2000
and school level matriculation results from 2000) to
investigate the impact of quality of education on
Environmental Economics, Volume 7, Issue 2, 2016
earnings in South Africa. Using matric exemption
scores and the pupil-teacher ratio of the respondents’
closest school during childhood as proxies for educa-
tion quality, they found that a 10 percentage point
increase in matric exemption score leads to 8% rise in
earnings, while a decrease in the pupil-teacher ratio
by one learner leads to a 1% increase in earnings.
Case and Yogo (1999) investigated the return to
education in South Africa using South African Cen-
sus data and two national surveys of school quality.
Quality of education is measured pupil-teacher ratio
(i.e. input measure). They regress return to educa-
tion on various measures of magisterial district
school quality and other characteristics of the ma-
gisterial district. Their results suggest that the quali-
ty of schools does matter. A decrease in the pupil-
teacher ratio of 5 students was found to be asso-
ciated with 1% increase in the returns to education.
In case of other countries, Aslam et al (2008), for
instance, studied the effect of quality of education
on earnings in Pakistan based on purpose-designed
survey data of more than 1000 households in 2007.
They use cognitive ability as a measure for quality
of education. They found that “much of the direct
effect of cognitive skills disappears after conditio-
ning on schooling, i.e., skills do not have an inde-
pendent effect on earnings over and above the effect
via schooling”. Another country where similar esti-
mations have been done is United States (U.S.).
Blau et al. (2004), in their analysis of the impact of
quality of education on earnings in the U.S., showed
that performance on cognitive tests is an important
determinant in U.S. wage inequality.
Data and analysis
The paper employed panel data framework to ex-
plore the effects of quality of education on earnings
in South Africa. The panel structure of the dataset
permits us to use various panel data models: pooled
OLS, fixed and random effects estimation. The
Pooled OLS is similar to the method of standard
ordinary least squares. The difference is that pooled
OLS estimation widens the database by pooling
together cross sectional and time series observations
of the sample to get more reliable estimates of the
parameters (Pulok, 2012). In other words, it uses
more information than standard OLS.
However, the Pooled OLS estimation is not always
appropriate for use with panel data for two reasons.
Firstly the errors are likely to be correlated within
panels. Secondly, the unmeasured heterogeneity that
causes this correlation may bias parameter estimates
(Greene, 2000). Researchers address these problems
by employing the random effects model and the fixed
effects. Researchers use the fixed effect estimation in
order to account for unobservable effects specific to
individual or households in panel data. This model
assumes that the unobservable specific effects do not
vary over time and that they are correlated with other
explanatory variables. In the random effects model,
unobservable specific effects are assumed to be uncor-
related to independent variables.
We use the Hausman specification test to identify
the most appropriate estimator (i.e., between fixed
effect and random effect) for our analysis. The null
hypothesis underlying this test is that the fixed ef-
fect and random effect estimators do not differ sub-
stantially. If the null hypothesis is rejected, random
effect is not appropriate and it may be better to use
fixed effect. The Hausman specification test sup-
ports random effects estimation for the regressions.
This suggests that random effects estimation will
provide more efficient estimators without sacrificing
consistency. We express the relationship between
earnings and quality of education by the following
representation of the panel data models – random
effect model:
01 2
ln ,
it it it i it
lnE Qeducation X
where it
lnE represents earnings of individual i at
time t. The error term it
includes both preference
shocks and measurement error and is distributed iden-
tically and independently. it
are individual characte-
ristics including the age of the household head, educa-
tion of the household head family size, etc.
Estimating the effect of education on earnings raises
some concerns: endogeneity. Following many au-
thors (see Card, 2001; Heckman et al., 2006; Kerr
and Quinn, 2010; Leyaro et al., 2010; Rankin San-
defur and Teal, 2010) in this field. we complement
more standard panel estimation techniques (random
effects) with the two-stage least squares (2SLS) in
order to deal with endogeneity bias.
Before executing econometric analysis, we take an
initial look at average earnings by race and geo-type
which allows us to highlight some, but interesting
stylized facts.
Environmental Economics, Volume 7, Issue 2, 2016
Fig. 1. Average earnings by geo-type in South Africa (2008-2012)
Fig. 2. Average wage by race in South Africa (2008-2012)
Figure 1 compares earnings across urban-rural
areas, with urban areas having substantially higher
earnings than rural areas. More specifically, aver-
age earnings are considerably higher in urban
areas, at R6351 compared to R3335 and R3582, in
traditional and farm areas. In South Africa, such
variations in earnings across urban-rural areas
account for a large part of the variation in provin-
cial earnings. Where provinces whose populations
are concentrated in rural areas (e.g., Kwazulu
Natal and Limpopo Province) have much lower
earnings than their counter part. Figure 2 shows a
breakdown of earnings by race. As expected, av-
erage earnings of Blacks are typically less than
their white counterparts, Indians, and coloured
group. More precisely, average earnings of white
(R17592) and Indian/Asian (R12164) population
are markedly higher than the average monthly
average earnings of their coloured (R5298) and
black African (R4144) counterparts.
Table 1. Random effects and 2SLS estimates of the effect of quality of education on earnings in SA
Random effects Standard errors
Two stage least square Standard errors
Quality of education 0.6360305*** (0.0259131)
0.7882978*** (0.023979)
ge -0.0003615 (0.0009445)
0.0010079 (0.000849)
Hhsize 0.0532638*** (0.0051591)
0.0451484*** (0.004113)
Married 0.3572548*** (0.0260524)
0.4014152*** (0.024364)
Gender female -0.1527743*** (0.0257938)
-0.1327184*** (0.023032)
Coloured 0.1758612*** (0.0433271)
0.1668093*** (0.040095)
Indians 0.5122276*** (0.157138)
0.4222781*** (0.126643)
Whites 1.02798*** (0.060356)
0.9528433*** (0.052959)
Urban 0.1590205*** (0.0396837)
0.1760105*** (0.038465)
Farms -0.1937742*** (0.0328345)
0.168788*** (0.033631)
Environmental Economics, Volume 7, Issue 2, 2016
Table 1 (cont.). Random effects and 2SLS estimates of the effect of quality of education on earnings in SA
Random effects Standard errors
Two stage least square Standard errors
Eastern Cape -0.0100805 (0.0669521)
-0.0118249 (0.059278)
Northern Cape -0.2889932*** (0.0648364)
-0.2854763*** (0.055431)
Free State -0.0383868 (0.0694083)
-0.0319402*** (0.060744)
KwaZulu-Natal -0.1893292*** (0.0744628)
-0.1672994*** (0.060846)
North West -0.1093459* (0.056183)
-0.0935632* (0.047915)
Gauteng 0.2065311*** (0.0677939)
0.2060117*** (0.058864)
Mpumalanga 0.1700879*** (0.0611294)
0.1374076*** (0.053575)
Limpopo 0.2204411*** (0.0639706)
0.2238369*** (0.056075)
Notes: Standard errors in parentheses. * significant at 10%; ** significant at 5%; *** significant at 1%.
The estimated results for both the random effect and
the two-stage least squares models are presented in
Table 1. In column (2), the results of the random
effect estimation are reported. These results based
on the Random effect model suggest that the quality
of education does matter – positive and significantly
on earnings. Specifically, estimate suggests that an
improvement in the quality of education increases
the earnings by 63%. Consistent with Arshaf and
Ashraf (1993), Khan and Irfan (1985), we found that
the coefficient for the control variables such as
gender (female) and geo-type (farm areas) is nega-
tive and significant which reinforces the perception
that females earn less than males, and that earnings
are lower in farm or rural areas than urban areas.
The results for the other control variables (i.e., ma-
rital status) are as expected – positive and, statisti-
cally, significantly different from zero.
As noted in the previous Section, a legitimate con-
cern raised by many studies in this field is that the
quality of education might be endogenously related
to earnings. In order to account for endogeneity and
to reduce the bias associated with it, the model is
estimated by using two-stage least squares models.
The results of the two-stage least squares are re-
ported in column (4). There are, at least, two crucial
features governing the selection of an instrument for
education: the instrument must be correlated with
education and its effect on earnings must operate
solely through its effect on education and should not
be directly affected by earnings. The instrument that
is used here is the lagged value of education, which
has been used in the previous studies.
After accounting for endogeneity, we find that the
quality of education retains its positive and signifi-
cant effect on earnings. Although in both specifica-
tions, the coefficients of this variable are significant
at the 1% level (confirming that quality of education
matters for earnings), the estimates of the two stage
least square (78%) are larger than the baseline esti-
mates (63%). Such difference confirms that the two
stage least square estimator provides less prone to
mis-specification than random or fixed effect estima-
tor (Belzil, 2007; Keane, 2010). To summarize, the
results across all models indicate a statistically signif-
icant impact of education on wages.
Although the OBE was reported to have not
worked in South Africa, according to Olivier
(2009), OBE had the potential to be a good educa-
tion curriculum, because it was more concerned
with producing critically thinking and creative
learners. Many have argued that, also, the
NCS2002 did not work, hence, the Revised Na-
tional Curriculum Statement and the CAPS. Argu-
ably, the biggest challenge in the South Africa’s
overall education system is that learners and stu-
dents are given overly long course-outlines to read.
In most cases, the quality of the course will be
assured after the peer-review process. But one
would agree that, in the context of socio-economic
transformation, the reforms of the education sys-
tem post 1994 are of necessity and have worked
relatively well in improving the governance of the
educational system, access to education and so
forth. This is visible in the progress made so far
towards more inclusive, equitable and efficient
policy-making processes between government and
social partners, and among the national and provin-
cial levels, as facilitated by various pertinent poli-
cies and legislation (Gumede, 2008). However, the
quality of education remains a challenge. As this
paper demonstrates, the quality of education is criti-
cal for many reasons.
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... The education system in South Africa has gone through various phases of curriculum transformation, and this has impacted negatively on the academic outcomes (Bell, Goga, Mondliwa & Roberts, 2018). A further challenge is that teachers have not realised that the continuous professional teacher development system as a policy imperative is not an option, but an obligation (Gumede & Biyase, 2016). Schools in the 21 st century also have to respond to the challenges of globalisation. ...
... The education system in South Africa has experienced numerous changes with regards to the curriculum (Gumede & Biyase, 2016). This may pose a threat to the teacher's self-efficacy in terms of job performance. ...
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The prevalence and management of stressors experienced by rural-based foundation phase teachers in South Africa were examined in this study. Quantitative and qualitative measures were used to gain more insight into stressors experienced by teachers. A questionnaire with open-ended and closed-ended questions was used to collect data from n=119 participants. The results of the study indicated that many foundation phase teachers experienced a wide variety of stressors. There was also an indication that whilst some teachers do have the necessary skills to cope with the stressors that they experienced, within their teaching and learning environment, using various techniques such as: exercise, spirituality and planning other participants struggled to cope and required support. Recommendations were made in order to assist those teachers who were unable to manage the stressors they experienced, limitations of the study discussed and avenues for further research are also presented.
... It was found to have shortcomings as it was quite an abrupt and out of place curriculum which teachers had to train for, within just five days. In 2000 there was a committee that was set up to test the progress of the curriculum which recommended that it be modified and streamlined so that it can be more accessible to teachers (Biyase & Gumede, 2016). The amendment with then implemented on the curriculum NCS. ...
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To be able to critically discuss the role of an envisioned teacher and a learner in the current CAPs and how they have changed over the years, we have to first reflect on the previous South African curriculum policies which are, Curriculum 2005 (C2005 with its OBE doctrine), the national curriculum statement (NCS) and the revised National Curriculum Statement(RNCS). C2005 and OBE The South African post-apartheid are way different than the apartheid educational policies. They are focused on a teaching and learning approach as opposed to the subject-based approach. The curriculum to 2005 together with the OBE ensured the integration of the daily lives into the content, it was now learner centered instead of teacher centered and this provided teachers and learners an autonomy in the kind of learning and assessments they had. In facilitating the integration in the senior phase and GET phases traditional subjects were called learning areas and there was appreciation of learners' contributions. C2005 was an unrealistic curriculum which was developed out of context and teachers were only trained for five days. Teachers were reduced by the education specialists from the department to being just observers. C2005 was then identified to have shortcomings so it was revised together with its principles while paying careful attention to the context of South African schools such as infrastructure, language in which the curriculum is delivered and alignment of curriculum and assessments.
According to Penuel et al. (2014), “curriculum materials and knowledge about curriculum purposes and structures are valuable tools that teachers often draw upon to organize instruction and facilitate student learning […]” (p. 751). Despite the emphasis of the post-apartheid government of South Africa on the significance of science and mathematics education as key areas of knowledge competence and human development (Reddy et al., 2012, p. 620); poor performance of South African learners in the sciences has been reported (TIMSS, 2016; Reddy et al., 2016) The South African Department of Education (DoE, 2009; DBE, 2011) and the South African Department of Basic Education (DBE, 2018) has partly linked the underachievement of South African learners in the sciences to/with issues bordering on the curriculum. The issue of challenges pertaining to curriculum is not peculiar to South Africa. Erstad and Voogt (2018) examined global issues and challenges with respect to the twenty-first century curriculum. In like manner, the Levine Institute (2016) reported about difficulties implementing a Global Ed K12 Curriculum in the United States of America (USA).
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Debates on whether reconciliation is taking place and particularly the issue of inclusive development continue in South Africa. Reconciliation is understood as a process whereby different population groups in South Africa peacefully coexist and restore amicable relations which were fractured by colonialism and apartheid. Inclusive development has to do with the socioeconomic transformation that involves, or rather benefits all the peoples of a country. Socioeconomic transformation is considered slow since the dawn of democracy, with nation-building, development, freedom, and related objectives having suffered in post-apartheid South Africa. The notions of justice and inclusivity require comprehensive analysis, especially many years after the formal end of apartheid in 1994. The paper examines development and reconciliation, in seeking an explanation for what appears to be a changing political landscape in South Africa, epitomised by the decline in the number of votes that the governing party, the African National Congress (ANC), is receiving since 2009 while the Economic Freedom Fighters, a relatively new party, is gaining traction. It is argued that the slow pace of inclusive development and weak reconciliation are compromising the ANC, resulting in the evolution of the political landscape in South Africa. Essentially, the inability to improve reconciliation has resulted in weak inclusive development and makes it difficult for South Africa to become a nation.
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As China transforms from a socialist planned economy to a market-oriented economy, its returns to education are expected to rise to meet those found in middle-income established market economies. This study employs a plausible instrument for education: the China Compulsory Education Law of 1986. We use differences among provinces in the dates of effective implementation of the compulsory education law to show that the law raised overall educational attainment in China by about 0.8 years of schooling. We then use this instrumental variable to control for the endogeneity of education and estimate the returns to an additional year of schooling in 1997-2006. Results imply that the overall returns to education are approximately 20 percent per year on average in contemporary China, fairly consistent with returns found in most industrialized economies. Returns differ among subpopulations; they increase after controlling for endogeneity of education.Institutional subscribers to the NBER working paper series, and residents of developing countries may download this paper without additional charge at
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Public sector reform has persisted for a sufficient length of time in several countries to examine patterns over the longer term. Australia and New Zealand are both early and long-term reforming countries that display distinctive features as well as being Anglophone countries identified with new public management. As third generation reformers, the products of more than two decades of reform activity are becoming clearer: the starker manifestations of new public management have less prominence now and a set of distinctive trends has emerged with commonalities across the two countries. The synthesis of elements in the third generation suggests that system integration and performance are central to the prevailing approach and that an emergent model is best represented in the mid-2000s as integrating governance. The article explores the constituent elements and significance of the new model and its relationship to earlier models.
In 1997 Turkey passed a law making middle school completion compulsory, increasing the mandatory education from 5 to 8 years. At the time of this policy change, only 3-in-5 students were completing middle school in Turkey. In this paper, I investigate the effect of this law on educational attainment, the impact of the increase in education on wages, and explore how this varied across individuals. My results indicate that the fraction of children completing middle school increased more than 20 percentage points as a result of this reform. The effects were especially pronounced for girls (particularly those living in rural areas): I estimate that as a result of the reform, an additional half a million girls attained a middle school diploma. There are also considerable spillover effects into high school completion rates. Despite the large policy-induced increase in educational attainment, I find little evidence of a corresponding increase in labor force participation or full-time work. The results suggest large wage gains of about 14 percent per year of schooling, with these benefits concentrated among females. Taken together, my findings demonstrate that the policy change induced a dramatic change in educational attainment among the youth of this predominantly Muslim developing country, but that the economic benefits of the change were limited to women.
The transition from apartheid education to the present education system in South Africa has not been without problems. Debates on educational issues are always contentious because they involve many stakeholders such as politicians and ordinary communities. In the past, South African education reflected the fragmented society in which it was based, and it hardly created conscientious, critical citizens. Education as a means of undemocratic social control created individuals who were not only short changed but were also compartmentalised along racial and cultural lines. The system also failed to address the democratic principles based on access, full participation and equity. Currently, however, education is seen as a weapon of transformation. The Revised National Curriculum Statement (RNCS) sees education as a tool that could root the South African values enshrined in the Constitution. Democracy, social justice, non-racism, equality and reconciliation are among the fundamental values of the South African education system. On the one hand, market requirements emphasise the need to empower learners in the sciences as this has the potential to improve the economy. On the other hand, education needs to empower learners for effective citizenship and individual enrichment. In this paper, we trace the historical foundations of formal education. Thereafter, the focus falls on how the current RNCS enhances the meaningful participation of learners in society. We look at the potential of education for nation-building. It is also crucial to look at models that could magnify the value of education in post-apartheid South Africa.
In the last two decades, primary and secondary school enrollment rates have declined in Nigeria while enrollment rates in post‐secondary school have increased. This paper estimates from the General Household Survey for Nigeria the private returns to schooling associated with levels of educational attainment for wage and self‐employed workers. The estimates for both men and women are small at primary and secondary levels, 2–4 percent, but are substantial at post‐secondary education level, 10–15 percent. These schooling return estimates may account for the recent trends in enrollments. Thus, increasing public investment to encourage increased attendance in basic education is not justifiable on grounds of private efficiency, unless investments to increase school quality have higher private returns. With high private returns to post‐secondary schooling, students at this level should pay tuition, to recoup more of the public costs of schooling, which may be redistributed to poor families through scholarships.
Since South Africa's first national democratic elections in 1994, the Government of National Unity has issued several curriculum‐related reforms intended to democratise education and eliminate inequalities in the post‐apartheid education system. The most comprehensive of these reforms has been labelled outcomes‐based education (OBE), an approach to education which underpins the new Curriculum 2005. While the anticipated positive effects of the new curriculum have been widely heralded, there has been little criticism of these proposals given the social and educational context of South African schools. In this article the philosophical, political and implementational dilemmas of OBE are systematically analysed and assessed.[1] An earlier version of this article, entitled Why OBE will Fail, was presented at a National Conference on outcomes‐based education held at the University of Durban Westville in March 1997. I am grateful to Renuka Vithal and Ben Parker for critical comments on the original paper.
Outcome-based education, a performance-based approach at the cutting edge of curriculum development, offers a powerful and appealing way of reforming and managing medical education.The emphasis is on the product-what sort of doctor will be produced-rather than on the educational process. In outcome-based education the educational outcomes are clearly and unambiguously specified. These determine the curriculum content and its organisation, the teaching methods and strategies, the courses offered, the assessment process, the educational environment and the curriculum timetable.They also provide a framework for curriculum evaluation. A doctor is a unique combination of different kinds of abilities. A three-circle model can be used to present the learning outcomes in medical education, with the tasks to be performed by the doctor in the inner core, the approaches to the performance of the tasks in the middle area, and the growth of the individual and his or her role in the practice of medicine in the outer area. Medical schools need to prepare young doctors to practise in an increasingly complex healthcare scene with changing patient and public expectations, and increasing demands from employing authorities. Outcome-based education offers many advantages as a way of achieving this. It emphasises relevance in the curriculum and accountability, and can provide a clear and unambiguous framework for curriculum planning which has an intuitive appeal. It encourages the teacher and the student to share responsibility for learning and it can guide student assessment and course evaluation. What sort of outcomes should be covered in a curriculum, how should they be assessed and how should outcome-based education be implemented are issues that need to be addressed.