Africanising The School Curriculum: A Case for Zimbabwe
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This paper argues that the school curricula in post-colonial African states have remained largely irrelevant to the needs of indigenous people. In spite of the tinkering with die curricula after the attainment of political independence in the name of educational reform, the fundamentals seem to have remained intact. Hence, observations have been made that the education systems continue to churn out Africans deeply rooted in Western ideals, norms, values, beliefs and knowledge systems that alienate them from mainstream African ways of life. Africans who trek to Western capitals to provide cheap labour under near slave conditions that could best be described in Mungazi’s (1991) words as ‘hewers of wood and drawers of water ’. Among those that have remained at home, there has emerged an African elite that has been assimilated into Western ways of life. The products of the school systems in Africa today, it is argued, have no identity. They are neither African nor European. In Zimbabwe such youths are termed ‘salads’, meaning people of no identity. The same can be said of most other African countries that were subjected to colonialism in the past and neocolonialism today, under the vague and obscure concept of globalization. Against this background, this paper advocates for re-engineering of the school curriculum by incorporating some indigenous knowledge systems rooted in African culture that have proved to meet the needs of the Africans over time.