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Something Doesn’t Add Up: Unemployed Teaching Graduates and Overcrowded Schools

The Struggle for the Eastern Cape, 1800-1854Martin Legassick, author of The Struggle for the Eastern Cape, 1800-1854, was quoted in an article about the growing number of unemployed teaching graduates in South Africa.

In an article for SACSIS, Anna Majavu highlighted the struggles of black graduates who are unable to find teaching placements.

Majavu says that even though teaching has been identified as a scarce skill, schools do not employ available teachers. As a result, hoardes of prospective students are turned away or excluded from overcrowded schools.

Because finding a placement for their children seems hopeless, parents from Cape Town’s Philippi East set up a makeshift school in a community hall earlier this year. Legassick says this is not the first time an intervention such as this has been necessary.

Read the article:

The same thing happened in Cape Town’s Mandela Park in 2003. The Anti-Eviction Campaign mobilised unemployed and retired teachers and occupied the Andile Nhose community centre to set up the ‘Peoples’ Power Secondary School’ to cater for 1800 excluded learners. According to research by professor emeritus Martin Legassick, the provincial department of education (then in the hands of the ANC) shut the school down after eight months, leaving hundreds of learners without a placement. This was after the school was invaded several times by riot police and learners teargased for the ‘crime’ of having occupied the community centre to use for a worthy activity.

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