What Ramaphosa needs to prioritise education in his first SONA address as president: Professor Osman

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Bonile Khanyi

An education expert said that she hopes President Cyril Ramaphosa will use his first State of the Nation Address on Friday night to address a key dimension in the education system.

Speaking to Inside Education on Friday, Professor Ruksana Osman said that Ramaphosa will have to address the “overall functionality” of the education system to ensure that all children have access to a good quality education.

“A key dimension that must be addressed is the overall functionality of the education system so that all children particularly those from poor households get a good quality education that they deserve,” said Osman.

She also said that “as things stand we have a two-tier education system – a working and effective school system for a small group of children and then a dysfunctional system for the majority of the children.”

Osman also urged Ramaphosa to address the country’s broken education system.

“While there has been tinkering with the curriculum and with teaching training the big issue that the incoming president has to address is the dysfunctional education system that serves to entrench educational inequality,” said Osman

“The dysfunctionality is pervasive and impacts all areas of school effectiveness from curriculum, teacher effectiveness, feeding schemes, scholar transport and physical infra structure.”

Ramaphosa is expected to address the nation in Parliament from 19:00 on Friday night.

This comes after he was officially sworn in as president on Thursday night‚ less than 24 hours after former President Jacob Zuma announced his resignation on Wednesday night.

After he was sworn in as new president, Ramaphosa promised not to disappoint the people of South Africa and vowed that his administration would always put the country first.

“I thank you for the honour that you’ve bestowed on me by electing me into this position, I truly feel humbled to have been given this great privilege of being able to serve our people. South Africa must come first in everything that we all do,” Ramaphosa said.

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