Essays

OBJECTIONS TO DRAFT HOME EDUCATION POLICY

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAIL

In November 2017, the South African Deparment of Basic Education released its draft policy on Home Education and asked for public comments on the policy.  

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RESPONSE TO THE BASIC EDUCATION LAW AMENDMENT BELA

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAIL

The South African Schools Act (SASA) is of concern in its entirety, as it speaks to a philosophy and approach to education that is opposed to the freedom of education, educational innovation, knowledge diversity and variety of pedagogy – all components which should be fundamental in any democratic society. Amendments to the Act include a 6 year jail sentence for non compliance and focussed alignment with state mandated CAPS curriculum.

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CORPORAL PUNISHMENT IN SOUTH AFRICA – WE’RE STILL AWAITING A FULL BAN

BY GROWING MINDS

In 2014, Carte Blanche did a segment on the potential ban of corporal punishment in the home and one of the people they interviewed on the topic was child rights advocate, Carol Bower. Unfortunately, Carte Blanche were not as thorough as parents would have liked in their reporting and it has left people afraid and angry about the potential ramifications of their chosen methods of parenting.

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OPEN LETTER TO EUSEBIUS MCKAISER

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAiL

On the July 2 2017, Eusebius Msckaiser, radio presenter, political analyst, broadcaster, lecturer and writer,  posted publicly on his facebook page his witnessing of an interaction between a mother and child. It seemed like his post was shared with humorous intent. But neither his words nor the subsequent comments from parents celebrating the numerous ways – which include violence and threats of violence – were funny to me.

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MY SCHOOL ~ RABINDRANATH TAGORE

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAiL

In 1863, Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, established a school modelled on the principles of humanism and sustainability, in Bengal, India.  He later delivered a lecture in America which was subsequently published in Personality London: MacMillan, 1933.  This lecture can be found in various places on the web.

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DESCHOOLING READING LIST

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAiL

Popular perception holds that the institution of schooling is the panacea that will eliminate poverty and inequality and bring prosperity to all who have access to it. It doesn’t matter where people fall on the political spectrum, left, right in between or not on it at all, they all have a shared understanding of the necessity for compulsory schooling for all children.

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AN IMMIGRANT DESCHOOLER IN A NATIVE UNSCHOOLER’S WORLD

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAiL

It’s often easy to differentiate immigrants from natives. Immigrants can try to immerse themselves into their native hosts’ world as best they can, but they still end up speaking the native’s language with an accent, sometimes they find some of the customs perplexing or approach them differently and often times they view various aspects of the native’s world very differently from the way the natives view their own worlds.

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SCHOOLING: IT’S NOT ABOUT LEARNING

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAiL

There is a strong sentiment amongst education academics against children learning exclusively outside of schools. Professor Jonathen Jansen, Vice Chancellor and Rector of the University of Free State, South Africa, recently shared this sentiment (to much applause) on Facebook.

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Why We Need to Reimagine Schooling and Education

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAiL

I am well aware that to question the value of free and compulsory schooling is considered taboo by many people. After all, everybody has been sold on the concept that education, in the form of industrial schooling, is the magic bullet that will deliver humanity, end poverty, provide jobs, create equality, pave the path toward upward social mobility and prosperity, deliver ‘civilization’ to the rest of the world and help develop people to their full potential. That’s the marketing message that most people have come to accept.

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The Getting Started Guide to Rethinking Schooling and Education

BY ZAKIYYA ISMAiL

So you’re rethinking the idea of schooling. Wondering whether schooling is really necessary for learning. You know, that deep meaningful kind of learning, not the learn-it-for-the-test kind of superficial learning. Maybe, you’re doubting the value schooling has added to your life or is adding to your kid’s life. The feelings are strong, but you’re not sure, because everyone around seems fine with the idea of schooling, more than fine, they’re devoted to the idea.

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