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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Learning amidst the turmoil: secondary schooling in Soweto 1977-1990
Author:Glaser, CliveISNI
Periodical:South African Historical Journal (ISSN 1726-1686)
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:black education
secondary education
educational history
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/02582473.2016.1217032
Abstract:In spite of immensely difficult circumstances, Orlando High School and Morris Isaacson High School, probably Soweto's two most important high schools, managed to achieve reasonable levels of education under strong leadership during the first two decades of Bantu Education (1956-1975.) They engaged strategically with Bantu Education, in many ways subtly undermining the intentions of the apartheid education system. This article takes the story of these two schools, and Soweto secondary schooling more broadly, into the late 1970s and 1980s. In 1977 most of Soweto's best secondary school teachers, including the extraordinary headmasters of Morris Isaacson and Orlando High, left state schooling in protest. While the reformist apartheid government invested heavily in expanding black urban secondary schooling from the late 1970s, grievances mounted against the grossly unequal education system. High schools became increasingly politicised as student movements reconstituted. New militant teacher unions also emerged from the mid-1980s. There were ongoing disruptions to schooling: boycotts, shut-downs, political meetings, mass detentions. While the student movement and teacher unions succeeded in paralysing the hated Bantu Education system, Soweto's high schools were left with a legacy of damage which has arguably never been repaired. Notes, ref. sum [Journal abstract]