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The making of South Africa's National Curriculum Statement

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This paper explores the social construction of the Revised National Curriculum Statement (Grades R-9) in South Africa between 2000-2002. The author, a participant in the process, uses the experience of the insider to tell the story. The paper discusses the relationship of different lobbies, voices, and interests to the curriculum, and argues that a neat translation between interests and curriculum outcomes is not possible, but that the echoes of struggles, which take both a material and symbolic form, are evident within the final version. The paper describes the influences of a vocational lobby, environmental and history interest groups, university-based intellectuals and non-governmental organizations, teachers' unions, and the Christian Right. It contends that there was no neat alignment of interests; they were sometimes internally fractured and alliances were unstable over time.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: March 1, 2005

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