Outcomes-Based Education to be scrapped

05 July 2010 - 00:12 By DOMINIC MAHLANGU

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga will announce a new education curriculum that will replace the widely criticised Outcomes-Based Education system.

The new education plan, titled Schooling 2025, comes after years of criticism by teachers and education experts, who said it was destroying the education system.

OBE was introduced in 1998 by then education minister, Kader Asmal.

Yesterday, spokesman and adviser for Motshekga, Panyaza Lesufi, confirmed that a decision on OBE would be made, but refused to expand on what will replace it. He said Motshekga will make a formal announcement tomorrow.

Last year, Motshekga told the National Assembly that there has been "considerable criticism of OBE" and that teachers complained of being overloaded with administrative work.

With just over 100 days left before matric pupils write their final examinations, Motshekga is expected to announce, among others, the following changes in the education system:

  • Teachers will be relieved of administrative work and focus on teaching. It is expected that teachers will be required from next year to develop a single teacher profile as part of the 2025 new plan;
  • Projects given to pupils as part of their formal assessment per learning area are to be reduced to one project per subject; and
  • Changes in the year marks and exams.

For Grade 4 to 9, a balance between year marks and exams will be 50%, while in Grades 10 to 12, a 25% year mark and 75% exam mark would be implemented.

The change will be implemented as a five-year plan.

In response, The SA Democratic Teachers' Union general secretary, Mugwena Maluleke said teachers have complained about a lack of training and the work overload.

"We have always pointed out . our concerns around lack of training, work overload and the poor quality of textbooks being used in classrooms.

"We hope that changes made will improve the system, and improve the quality of education for our learners," Maluleke said.

DA MP James Lorimer said whatever Motshekga said tomorrow, government must accept that hundreds of students have been "disadvantaged" because of OBE.

"Lack of capacity at school district level remains a challenge, and whatever new system we put in place, it will be hard to see good results," said Lorimer.

The process to review OBE was started by former education minister Naledi Pandor.