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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - European Journal of Educational Studies
Title Multicultural Education: The Missing Link in Botswana Education Policy
Volume 51
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2013
Page numbers 101-110
URL https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/f323/d9e66df207a936c1559acf2a359c1cc3799d.pdf
In 1977, Botswana adopted an ambitious philosophical policy for education development dubbed Education for Kagisano (Social Harmony). The policy was a nation-state building strategy to ensure that citizens were educated along the lines of democracy, peace, solidarity and social justice. Education for social harmony was found necessary at a time when the country was coming out of colonization. In this paper, we argue that although Education for Kagisano was a good philosophical policy in as far as building a new nation-state different from that of the colonizers, the policy failed to take into account the multicultural nature and diversity of Batswana as a people. Rather, it imagined Batswana as a homogenous cultural society. As a consequence, Botswana’s education system to date educates learners along the identity lines of the mainstream culture. We argue here that failure to embrace multicultural education within the philosophy of Education for Kagisano has led to the balkanization and marginalization of other cultural groups. The paper contends, and further demonstrates that this failure is the sole cause of the disparity and dismal performance and low academic achievement by the majority of the students in the so-called remote area regions of Botswana inhabited by the so-called ethnic minority Batswana. The paper finally proposes that in order for Botswana to become a typical shining example of democracy in Africa (as often labeled), it should revisit its philosophical policy of Education for Kagisano with a view to promote multiculturalism, pluralism and diversity in both education policy and pedagogical practices.

Related studies

Jotia, Lathi A, and O. N Pansiri. "Multicultural Education: The Missing Link in Botswana Education Policy." European Journal of Educational Studies (2013).
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