The Persistence of Inequalities in Education

Servaas van der Berg

in South African Economic Policy under Democracy

Published in print March 2009 | ISBN: 9780199551460
Published online May 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780191720376 | DOI:
The Persistence of Inequalities in Education

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This chapter provides an overview of the educational situation in South Africa a decade after the political transition, with the focus on its economic dimensions. It is shown that the school system still largely fails in enhancing upward mobility of poor children in the labour market, inter alia because of the continued weak performance of many black schools. The empirical analysis will show that racial composition of a school — as proxy for former school department — remains a major determinant of matriculation pass rates. The conclusion points to enduring socio-economic and racial differentials in school outcomes, but also cautions against seeking the solution mainly through resource shifts.

Keywords: South Africa; educational attainment; inequality; education policy

Chapter.  10755 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Economics

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