‘Education in SA is like snakes-and-ladders’


The more things change, the more they remain the same, was the message driven home by Kirti Menon, great granddaughter of Mahatma Gandhi, through her lecture on 'Education in South Africa: A Game of Snakes and Ladders' on the fifth day of the ongoing DD Kosambi Festival of Ideas at the Kala Academy in Panaji on Wednesday evening.
She likened the education scenario in post-apartheid SA to a game of snakes-and-ladders. "One of the tricks of the game is to get to the top," she said. "However, you have to move through the blocks. The education system in SA is much like that, one step forward and two steps backwards. More often than not, the snakes are of our own making, and at times we fail to see the ladder for what it is, an opportunity," she said, describing the end of apartheid in SA as an opportunity and drawing parallels with Nelson Mandela's book, 'A Long Walk To Freedom'.
"How does one undo the past? Can we undo the past? I don't think so," she said, adding that we have to work in the present to succeed in the future. "Nowhere in the world did we have a society based on inequality," she claimed, describing the education system in SA before 1994 as the "geo-political imagination of apartheid." [TOI]