The Prospects of Fostering Entrepreneurial Customs in Historically-disadvantaged Schools in South Africa

By Malefane Johannes Lebusa.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Historically-disadvantaged schools in South Africa are faced with enormous challenges of providing quality education to often financially-disadvantaged learners thus improving their chances of accessing higher learning and the prospects of a better life. Given the fiscal austerity that the South African Government self-imposed since 1996 and the no-school fees policy to mostly disadvantaged schools, there never was going to be sufficient resources to meet the challenges of providing quality education. This paper explores, through a quantitative survey instrument, the prospects of stimulating the growth and development of entrepreneurial custom in more than 270 historically-disadvantaged schools within the Gauteng Provincial Education in South Africa with a view of cushioning these schools against this enduring disadvantage. The disadvantage is exacerbated by the parental perception that historically-advantaged schools offer better prospects of their children making it to higher learning by virtue of being better resourced. This scenario thus results in high migration of township learners to these schools that are, by dint of apartheid status quo ante, better resourced, located within urban areas and continues to charge exorbitant schools fees which the parents of these learners barely afford to pay. In addition, these schools reflect the known educational axiom that education is largely a middle class enterprise. This paper attempted to measure the level of entrepreneurial custom within the historically-disadvantaged schools as a basis of building their entrepreneurial self-efficacy that would offset the setback of being disadvantaged and losing learners to historically-advantaged schools. Areas that were specifically measured were risk-taking, proactiveness and innovativeness. Six hundred educators from more than 270 schools were randomly sampled and completed a questionnaire that addressed risk-taking, proactiveness and innovativeness. The findings point to less risk-taking but high levels of proactiveness and innovativeness. It is not unreasonable to suggest that with some explicit entrepreneurship training, these schools can offset the disadvantage.

Keywords: Entrepreneurial Customs, Risk-taking, Innovation, Pro-activity, Learning Organization, Open System, Resource Dependency

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp.267-276. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 597.370KB).

Dr. Malefane Johannes Lebusa

Academic Development Facilitator, Learning Development, Vaal University of Technology, Vanderbijlpark, South Africa

I completed B.A.(Hon), MBA and PhD in Educational Management and started working as a teacher for fifteen years thereon I joined Vaal University of Technology. I also worked at University of South Africa In-Service Training Department as a Learning Facilitator. I was awarded a Provincial Teachers’ Award for outstanding work in teaching and also a Community Development award by the Emfuleni Local Municipality. My main research interests relate to Educational Leadership and Management, Entrepreneurship and Innovation. I presented a paper on Entrepreneurship at an international conference.


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