The parliament received a very disturbing report by Pali Lehohla, about the growing failure gap between Black and the White students.
South Africa’s Statistician General Pali Lehohla related this to the parliament on Wednesday saying the number of black students who graduate from university compared to their white counterparts is totally unacceptable.
Presenting the financial statistics of higher education institutions for 2015, Lehohla painted a bleak picture of black youths which he said needs to be addressed by making education a priority.
He said considering progression rates between the blacks and white, black people were not doing well.
Explaining the devastating rate black education has gone, the SA statistics said for every one black person who graduates from university, there are six white people who make it through successfully
This according to Pali Lehohla is unlike in the 80s where for every black graduate there were 1.2 white graduates. “These numbers are declaring a horror, to put it bluntly. It is totally unacceptable,” he said.
“There are several reasons, but you find that their stories are the same. When a 17-year-old with no money is admitted at university and funded for education, but does not have money for food, or accommodation or some other essential, they drop out. Where else can they get money to sustain themselves?” he added.
“There were instances where students failed because of partying, drugs and alcohol,
“We all did that at university. But this rate of failure is not because all of them do drugs and drink. It can’t be, there has to be a different explanation,” he said to the committee.
Education was only number 18 on the list of priorities for politicians and it would continue to be a problem until it was prioritized, he said referring to the results of a survey conducted by his office.
Lehohla’s recent revelation echoes his statement on some of the difficulties faced by SA youths where he said we have more coloured and black youth in South Africa are unemployed, involved in crime, and uneducated than other race groups,
“For Indians and whites, the future is very clear. For coloured and black youth, it’s not. It takes twice the effort for a black or coloured child qualified from the same university to be employed,” Lehohla said.
He said two-thirds of those unemployed in South Africa in 2014 were young people and that White, Indian, or Asian youths were more likely to complete Grade 12 than their black and coloured counterparts.
Black and coloured youths were also less likely to finish university. And unemployment was strongly linked to education, Pali Lehohla stated.