Democracy, Education and Development: Theory and Reality
Keywords:democracy, politics, development, modernisation, bureaucracy, democratic schooling, authoritarianism
This article explores the relationships between education and democracy in developing countries. It discusses the nature of “development” and in particular the idea of political indicators of development. The paper then discusses modernisation theory in relation to education as providing a necessary, but not sufficient, bureaucratic basis for democratic political development. These ideas are then examined in relation to the realities of schooling in developing countries and the problems of providing learners with both an effective organisational experience and a democratic one. While there are many examples of good practice in relation to democratic education in developing countries, there are also many obstacles and the dominant model of schooling is still authoritarian. The article then focuses on South Africa as a case study of a developing country that has attempted to introduce more democratic forms of schooling but where authoritarianism persists in education despite some democratic progress. The paper ends by discussing why democratic education remains a minority practice globally and the key obstacles it faces.
Alexander, R. (2000). Culture and pedagogy: International comparisons in primary education. Oxford: Blackwell.
Altbach, P., & Kelly, G. (1978). Education and colonialism. London: Longman.
Aristotle. (1962). The politics. Harmondsworth: Penguin.
Beetham, J., & Boyle, K. (1995). Introducing democracy: 80 questions and answers. London: Polity Press/UNESCO.
Brown, B., & Duku, N. (2008). Negotiated identities: Dynamics in parentsâ€™ participation in school governance in rural Eastern Cape schools and implication for school leadership. South African Journal of Education, 28(3), 431-450.
Bush, T., & Heystek, J. (2003). School governance in the new South Africa. Compare, 33(2), 127-138.
Davies, L. (2011). Learning for state-building: Capacity development, education and fragility. Comparative Education, 47(2), 157-180.
Davies, L. (1999). Comparing definitions of democracy in education. Compare 29(2), 127-140.
Davies, L. (1995). International indicators of democratic schools. In C. Harber (Ed.), Developing democratic education. Ticknall: Education Now.
Davies, L., Harber, C., & Schweisfurth, M. (2002). Democracy through teacher education. Birmingham: CIER/CfBT.
Davies, L., Harber, C., & Schweisfurth, M. (2005). Democratic professional development. Birmingham: CIER/CfBT.
Davies, L., & Kirkpatrick, G. (2000). The EURIDEM project: A review of pupil democracy in Europe. London: Childrenâ€™s Rights Alliance.
Diamond, L. (1993). Political culture and democracy in developing countries. Boulder, CO: Lynne Reiner.
Fagerlind, I., & Saha, L. (1989). Education and national development: A comparative perspective. Oxford: Pergamon.
Freire, P. (1972). Pedagogy of the oppressed. London: Sheed and Ward.
Fullan, M. (2007). The new meaning of educational change. London: Routledge.
Green, A. (1990). Education and state formation. London: Macmillan.
Hallak, J., & Poisson, M. (2006). Corrupt schools, corrupt universities: What can be done?. Paris: IEP.
Hammett, D., & Staeheli, L. (2011). Respect and responsibility: Teaching citizenship in South African high schools. International Journal of Educational Development, 31(3), 269-276.
Harber, C. (2009). Toxic schooling: How schools became worse. Nottingham: Educational Heretics Press.
Harber, C. (2004). Schooling as violence: How schools harm pupils and societies. London: Routledge Falmer.
Harber, C. (2001). State of transition: Post-apartheid educational reform in South Africa. Oxford: Symposium.
Harber, C., & Davies, L. (1997). School management and school effectiveness in developing countries. London: Cassell.
Harber, C., & Mncube, V. (2012). Education, democracy and development. Oxford: Symposium Books.
Harber, C., & Muthukrishna, N. (2000). School effectiveness and school improvement in context: The case of South Africa. School Effectiveness and Improvement, 11(4), 421-434.
Human Rights Watch. (2001). Scared at school: Sexual violence against girls in South African schools. New York: Human Rights Watch.
Hunt, F. (2007). Schooling citizens: a study of policy in practice in South Africa. Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Sussex, Brighton, England.
Inkeles, A. (1969a). Participant citizenship in six developing countries. American Political Science Review, 63(4), 1120-1141.
Inkeles, A. (1969b). Making men modern. American Journal of Sociology, 75(2), 208-225.
Inkeles, A. (1961). National character and modern political systems. In F. L. K. Hsu (Ed.), Psychological Anthropology (pp. 172 â€“ 208). Homewood: Horsey Press.
Inkeles, A., & Smith, D. (1974). Becoming modern. London: Heinemann.
Jansen, J. (2001). Explaining non-change in education reform after apartheid: Political symbolism and the problem of policy implementation. In J. Jansen & Y. Sayed (Eds.), Implementing education policies: The South African experience. Cape Town: University of Cape Town Press.
Kendall, N. (2009). International development education. In R. Cowen & M. Kazamias (Eds.), International handbook of comparative education (Springer International Handbooks of Education, Vol. 22). Springer: Dordrecht.
Leftwich, A. (Ed.). (1996). Democracy and development. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Meighan, R. (1994). The freethinkersâ€™ guide to the educational universe. Nottingham: Educational Heretics Press.
Ministerial Review Committee on School Governance. (2004). Review of school governance in South African public schools (Tech, Rep.). Pretoria, South Africa: Department of Education, Government Press.
Mncube, V. (2005). School governance in the democratisation of education in South Africa: The interplay between policy and practice. Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, England.
Mncube, V., & Harber, C. (2010). Chronicling educator practices and experiences in the context of democratic schooling and quality education. International Journal of Educational Development, 30(6), 614â€“624.
Motala, S., Dieltiens,V., Carrim, N., Kgobe, P., Moyo, G. & Rembe, S. (2007). Educational access in South Africa: Country analytic review (Project, rep.). Falmer, UK: Consortium for research on educational access, transitions and equity (CREATE).
Nelson Mandela Foundation. (2005). Emerging voices. Cape Town: HSRC Press.
Riggs, F. (1964). Administration in developing countries: The theory of prismatic society. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Schweisfurth, M. (2011). Learner-centred education in developing country contexts: from solution to problem? International Journal of Educational Development 31(5), 425-432.
Schweisfurth, M. (2002). Teachers, democratisation and educational reform in Russia and South Africa. Oxford: Symposium.
Spreen, C. & Vally, S. (2010). Prospects and pitfalls: A review of post-apartheid education policy research and analysis in South Africa. Comparative Education, 46(4), 429-448.
Toffler, A. (1970). Future shock. London: Bodley Head.
Trafford, B. (2003). School councils, school democracy and school improvement. Leicester: SHA.
UNDP. (2010). Human development report. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Van Der Steen, N. (2011). School improvement in Tanzania: School culture and the management of change. PhD Thesis, Institute of Education, University of London, London, England.
Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License of their choice (usually CCBY 3.0 unported, but determined at the proofing stage by consultation with the Editor - readers looking for copyright permissions are required to do this on a case by case basis) that allows others to share the work in some way with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal. We appreciate authors placing a link to the Other Education site wherever they choose to offer a PDF download to the original OE article.