Redress in democratic South Africa

Redress and transformation initiatives in democratic South Africa since 1994 have sought to heal the historic injustices of the apartheid regime to effect socio-economic reform. This led to the development of various policies and structures intended to bring relief to historically disenfranchised communities. Some of the most notable legislative developments during this period were the Freedom Charter, the Constitution and the Reconstruction and Development Programme. This era of progress and reform spearheaded by then President Nelson Mandela epitomised hope for the masses of South Africans by forefronting education as a powerfill means to socioeconomic reform and nation building.

The need to respond to the socio-economic challenges of a new developing nation during the late 1990s exerted political and financial pressure on the existing institutions of higher learning to redress unjust entrenched exclusionary historical systems and processes and to promote equity by creating opportunity and accessibility for historically marginalised communities. While access to higher education was of critical importance, the systemic barriers to articulation in a bifurcated framework of multiple, parallel streams required a reconceptualisation of the entire framework of higher education qualifications. One of the primary objectives of the transformation of higher education, therefore, was to create a coherent framework to facilitate portability, mobility and articulation at different qualification levels and across different types of higher learning institutions. Furthermore,

An overview of the transformation 13 alternative learning pathways had to be considered within such a structure, thereby affording unique opportunities for the implementation of RPL as a key transformation strategy in professional education.

Reform of higher education legislation and regulation in the early democratic era

The rapid transformation of legislation and the implementation of reformed regulatory structures governing higher education, in the democratic dispensation, provide valuable frames of reference for the contextualisation and development of responsive alternative learning pathways including RPL. It is necessary, therefore, to briefly outline the key legislative reforms of higher education in the democratic era.

< Prev   CONTENTS   Source   Next >