Civics Academy launches Lecturer Guides for Colleges for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET)

In South Africa, young people are increasingly losing confidence in politics. The legacy of Nelson Mandela is at stake. In cooperation with the Ministry of Higher Education, the Hanns Seidels Foundation’s initiative Civics Academy has developed lecturer guides for civic education at colleges for vocational training. 

For South Africa, the topic of civic education is of great importance. There is hardly any other country in the world where social and economic inequality is greater. The current poor economic situation in South Africa contributes to the fact that young people are increasingly losing confidence in politics and the state. They do not feel able to actively and constructively shape South Africa’s future. Dissatisfaction has grown in recent years. The increase in violent protests, for example due to poor municipal services, is worrying. At the same time, the political discourse has become more confrontational and often hostile. Many young adults no longer regard elections as a suitable means of expressing their wishes and needs. There is no other section of the population where there are more non-voters. However, young people in particular have the difficult task of defending and developing the political achievements of Nelson Mandela, said Gauteng Minister of Education Panyaza Lesufi.

Therefore, Civics Academy/ Hanns Seidel Foundation has been working together with the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) on a teacher’s manual for civic education in colleges for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) for more than a year. After numerous expert discussions and focus groups, the teachers’ guide Facilitating Active Citizenship was presented at the Nelson Mandela Foundation to directors of TVET colleges in the country and more than 100 teachers and decision makers from politics and civil society.

The content of the Guide is mainly based on 5 of our Civics Academy videos. The aim is to support teachers and lecturers to introduce selected topics of civic education, which are already part of the curriculum, to students in a fun and interactive way.

The fact that the handbook was very well received during the launch and training shows the great need for new methods and modern media in teaching civic education. Hanns Bühler, representative of the HSS in Southern Africa: “Politically educated young people are the cornerstone of any democracy. Especially in young democracies like South Africa, educational materials which are adapted to national needs are of particular importance. Our project partners are setting a good example in this respect. A great success for German foundation work abroad!”