New curriculum benefits the rich - TUN

16 January 2020 | Education

Teachers Union of Namibia (TUN) secretary-general Mahongora Kavihuha says the new curriculum for basic education is worrying.

Briefing the media in the capital on Tuesday, he said the revised curriculum, instead of narrowing the divide between the rich and poor, actually serves to accentuate the divide.

Kavihuha said the curriculum states explicitly that after learners complete the National Senior Secondary Certificate grade 11 ordinary level, they will have to choose between getting jobs, pursuing vocational training, distance education or going on to grade 12 if they have achieved the requisite grades.

“The situation as it stands currently is such that the few learners who meet the prescribed proceeding requirements to grade 12 are most likely from wealthy families,” he said.

He added that the majority of learners, most likely from poor families, will end up with only a grade 11 qualification, which compromises their chances of pursuing better-paid careers such as engineering and medicine.

“Ironically, universities in South Africa have as far back as 2015 already started tracking the issue of admitting our students who are going to graduate through the revised curriculum, while our universities have yet to publicise how they are going to handle graduates from the revised curriculum,” Kavihuha said.

The TUN secretary-general also raised concern about unemployed teachers, saying the number of unemployed teachers continue to swell each year as new ones graduate.

“TUN demands that a fully-fledged research programme should be commissioned to determine how many teachers will be needed in this decade at least and what field or subjects of study they will be needed for,” Kavihuha stressed.

He added that it is crucial that such a study or research focuses on vocational training, especially in view of the importance placed on it in the revised national curriculum.

The ministry embarked on a curriculum review as recommended at the 2011 education conference. The new curriculum has been implemented since 2015 in three phases - junior primary, senior primary and junior secondary.

NAMPA

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