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Government-induced teacher failure in South Africa - causes and analysis1


  • S. G. Hosking


The problem of teachers being hired but not teaching because of government action or inaction is a serious one in South Africa. This paper describes the problem and explores two aspects of it: non-enforcement of employment contracts with teachers and shortages of certain subject teachers caused by inflexibility in the remuneration structure of teachers. Non-enforcement has become a severe problem because a situation has developed in many schools, mainly black ones, where teachers are able to get away with doing very little work (shirking). The current remuneration structure has become a problem in that it has given rise to a situation where the only way to plug certain teaching gaps is by placing some teachers in positions for which they have insufficient training (inferior substitution). It is concluded that it is desirable that the government properly enforce its teacher contracts and that more flexibility should be introduced into the salary structure with respect to specific staffing scarcities.

Suggested Citation

  • S. G. Hosking, 2000. "Government-induced teacher failure in South Africa - causes and analysis1," Development Southern Africa, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(5), pages 641-665.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:deveza:v:17:y:2000:i:5:p:641-665
    DOI: 10.1080/713661431

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