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Appears in:
Page: 9174 (abstract only)
Publication year: 2018
ISBN: 978-84-697-9480-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2018.2246

Conference name: 12th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 5-7 March, 2018
Location: Valencia, Spain

THE RED AND THE BLUE: NARRATIVES AND EXPERIENCES OF ICT INTEGRATION IN SOUTH AFRICAN MARGINALISED SCHOOLS

L. Dalvit

Rhodes University (SOUTH AFRICA)
From the Soweto riots against the oppressive policies of Bantu Education to recent protests demanding free Higher Education for all, the education of members of marginalised communities in South Africa has always been a contentious issue. The exclusion and failure of large numbers of students could be attributed to lack of transformation and a Euro-centric curriculum at tertiary level as well as an under-resourced and under-performing education system at lower levels. Compared to their peers in other countries, Grade Four pupils perform poorly in basic literacy and numeracy tests, let alone 21st century ICT skills. Routine tasks such as the delivery of textbooks to schools prove to be a major challenge for the Department of Basic Education, supporting the idea that using electronic material would be an attractive alternative. Government and private initiatives at the national and local level sought to promote the use of ICT in schools. However, such efforts have been frustrated by many challenges.

In this paper, I explore the cultural dimension of the resistance to technology at various levels. I rely on the analysis of policy documents and news articles dealing with ICT in marginalised schools. I also reflect on ten years of experience in ICT-for-development education projects and on working as ICT in Education specialist in an Education Department at a rural but historically privileged University. I pay attention to overt and covert rationales for the integration of ICT in Education in relation to (de)coloniality. The "abyssal line" dividing what can be reasonably considered indigenous from what is constructed as alien is a defining feature of post-colonial contexts. In rural and peri-urban areas of the Eastern Cape Province the colour red is associated with tradition and/or backwardness and the colour blue is associated with modernity and/or assimilation. While ICT is firmly in the "blue" camp, evidence exists of the appropriation of - particularly mobile - technology in aspects of daily life are considered as "red", such as the organisation of funerals, for instance.

Schools are quintessentially blue institutions and the colour dichotomy often follows educational lines. However, there is relatively little evidence of appropriation of technology in schools for educational purposes. Anecdotes abound of computer labs and other ICT equipment donated to schools being locked away for fear it might get stolen or damaged. An increasing number of mobile devices is available to students across all socio-economic sectors but their use is forbidden on the premises of most schools. While the dominant narrative around ICT in Education emphasises the need to prepare an ICT-savvy workforce and the improvements ICT can bring to teaching (i.e. the vocational and pedagogical rationales) ICT integration appears to reproduce and in fact amplify trends present in the broader society, such as repression and control.
@InProceedings{DALVIT2018RED,
author = {Dalvit, L.},
title = {THE RED AND THE BLUE: NARRATIVES AND EXPERIENCES OF ICT INTEGRATION IN SOUTH AFRICAN MARGINALISED SCHOOLS},
series = {12th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2018 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-697-9480-7},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2018.2246},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2018.2246},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {5-7 March, 2018},
year = {2018},
pages = {9174}}
TY - CONF
AU - L. Dalvit
TI - THE RED AND THE BLUE: NARRATIVES AND EXPERIENCES OF ICT INTEGRATION IN SOUTH AFRICAN MARGINALISED SCHOOLS
SN - 978-84-697-9480-7/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2018.2246
PY - 2018
Y1 - 5-7 March, 2018
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 12th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2018 Proceedings
SP - 9174
EP - 9174
ER -
L. Dalvit (2018) THE RED AND THE BLUE: NARRATIVES AND EXPERIENCES OF ICT INTEGRATION IN SOUTH AFRICAN MARGINALISED SCHOOLS, INTED2018 Proceedings, p. 9174.
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