Journal of Education - Volume 39, Issue 1, 2006
Volume 39, Issue 1, 2006
Author Shirley WaltersSource: Journal of Education 39, pp 7 –26 (2006)More Less
Adult learning is located within a lifelong learning framework both as a lens for looking back and for projecting forward. The competing views of adult and lifelong learning are discussed and a preliminary overview of what has been achieved within adult learning in the last 10 years in South Africa is given. Lifelong learning and the learning region are suggested as frameworks for providing a ï¿½connected upï¿½ approach to human development, and a possibility for finding ï¿½troubled spaces of possibilitiesï¿½ (Edwards and Usher, 2005) to create new solutions to old problems.
The trade union as a learning organisation ? A case study of informal learning in a collective, social-action organisational contextAuthor Linda CooperSource: Journal of Education 39, pp 27 –46 (2006)More Less
The ï¿½learning organisationï¿½ literature tends to take a narrow view of what constitutes an organisation, assuming that all organisations are guided by the logic of profitmaximization. Understandings of the learning organisation could be enriched by research into other kinds of organisation, particularly those that have primarily a social purpose. This paper critically examines processes of informal learning within a South African trade union. It draws on Situated Learning and Activity theories to illuminate these processes of learning in an organisational context which is collective and non-hierarchical in character, social-action oriented, and directed towards social change. It concludes that proponents of ï¿½the learning organisationï¿½ may have something to learn by studying the processes of learning in organisations which are social-action oriented and social purpose in nature. At the same time, however, a ï¿½learning organisationï¿½ is not simply the product of good design; its existence is subject to history and to shifting power relations both within and outside of organisations.
Source: Journal of Education 39, pp 47 –62 (2006)More Less
For many rural, impoverished South Africans who continue to live in conditions of political and economic oppression, ten years of democracy have not reduced their marginalisation. Started in 1999, the Human Rights, Development and Democracy project is a co-operative initiative between an NGO offering adult basic education (ABE) in rural centres in KwaZulu-Natal, and the Centre for Adult Education, of the University of KwaZulu-Natal. The project aims to serve participants in rural areas, who are undereducated, mostly unemployed, and whose participation in democratic procedures is extremely limited. Informed by, among others, Mezirowï¿½s transformational theory, the project combines adult basic education with education for democracy and income generation projects, with a view to enable people to reach new perceptions of their lives and South African society. The article shows how participants moved from early expectations, and how different paces and rhythms of different participants had to be accommodated within the project paradigms.
Source: Journal of Education 39, pp 63 –88 (2006)More Less
This article investigates the ways in which two rural Adult Basic Education and Training (ABET) Centres in the Limpopo Province address the challenges of HIV/AIDS. Theories of social capital are used to explain the different responses of the Centres. The communities surrounding both Centres face similar structural problems of poverty, unemployment, migrancy, gender inequality, poor health and low levels of education. In one Centre, educators and learners denied that HIV/AIDS was a serious issue. They had no confidence in the public health service, and no access to information or networks which support HIV/AIDS work. In this centre, no efforts were made by educators or officials to integrate HIV/AIDS in the ABET curriculum. In the second Centre, situated closer to town, the educator responsible for Life Orientation had engaged learners in a variety of social networks which directly or indirectly addressed AIDS. These networks increased the exchange of information among learners, and facilitated collective goals. The paper concludes that developing the social capital of ABET officials, educators and learners plays an important part in efforts to build the capacity of ABET Centres to respond positively to the challenges of HIV/AIDS.
South African illiteracy statistics and the case of the magically growing number of literacy and ABET learnersSource: Journal of Education 39, pp 90 –112 (2006)More Less
This article examines the state of South African illiteracy and adult basic education statistics. Firstly, it reexamines the mid to late 1990s consensus on South Africaï¿½s illiteracy statistics (based largely on Household surveys and the 1996 Census data) which formed the baseline starting point for various government adult education provision and campaign goals (such as Education for All and the South African National Literacy Initiative), and finds that the actual number of illiterates has not been significantly reduced (if indeed they have been reduced) by such interventions. Secondly it provides a critique of the Ministry and Department of Educationï¿½s claims and their supporting statistics on how various state interventions have allegedly rendered illiterates literate and provided adult basic education to millions of people. The authors present evidence to show that a series of these government claims are based upon unreliable, confused, self-contradictory, inflated and sometimes non-existent data and that these misleading claims about provision have indeed become endemic.
Author Peter RuleSource: Journal of Education 39, pp 113 –135 (2006)More Less
The government has neglected the constitutional right of adults to basic education over the last decade. This paper examines the bases for holding the government to account in the constitutional court for its performance. It examines the effectiveness of government responses to adult illiteracy since 1994, drawing on a range of policy documents, statistics, scholarly reviews and other data. It outlines two lines of argument which might be pursued against the government: its underspending on adult basic education, and its failure to cater for adults for whom the formal ABET system is not accessible. On a constructive note, it calls for a comprehensive approach to the challenges of adult basic education, outlining key principles that might inform such an approach as well as alternative models of provision.