DECOLONISATION OF PRE-SERVICE TEACHER EDUCATION CURRICULUM FOR EQUITY AND SOCIAL JUSTICE IN HIGHER EDUCATION
The transition from apartheid to democracy came with high expectations for a speedy transformation. The education system in South Africa before 1994 was rooted in segregation and inequality among the social groups that exist in South Africa. Hence, the education system post-independence has endeavoured to provide not only physical access but also epistemological access to learning for all students. Therefore, the fundamental purpose of education is to provide an impartial and comprehensive curriculum. Pre-service teacher education is a critical component of higher education in any country. Thus, the provision of teacher education within institutions of higher learning is a crucial societal force capable of advancing a curriculum that is transformative and grounded in a framework of social justice. The objective of this research is to enhance the potential for decolonising pre-service teacher education to promote equity and inclusivity, utilising social justice. The curriculum in question revitalises social justice that prioritises the significance of the individual aspects of pedagogy, the politics of diversity, and the correlation between pedagogy and agency. The utilisation of literary voices in teacher education was deemed a valuable approach in examining the potential of social justice theory as coined by Rawls (1971), to contribute to a more inclusive and equitable teacher education curriculum, guided by transformative principles for pre-service teachers. A systematic literature review of various literature sources revealed that the integration of novel concepts and topics into teacher education is critical for transformation. The integration of indigenous knowledge, history, and languages into teaching and learning will critically engage students in knowledge, power, and being. Thus, the transformative curriculum through social justice will enhance parity and inclusiveness in the delivery of educational curricula. This research contributes to the discourse on the decolonisation process for higher education, which has long been predominantly framed in Eurocentric pedagogy in South Africa. Hence, an alternative viewpoint on pre-service teacher education curriculum calls for decolonisation using social justice theory.
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