The South African Students Congress has been engaged in a restless struggle for free, quality and equal education. A dozen of marches and memorandum have been submitted to the ministry of higher education. This year a petition signed by one million responsible students and citizens will be submitted to the Higher Education and Training Ministry but directed also inter alia to the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa. We hope that this will accelerate transformation of the education system in general and higher education in particular.
Youth political formations, student formations in particular, have historically been the most radical layer of South Africa's political history. The founding of National Union of South African Students in 1924 ushered in a progressive student voice that would both challenge intransigent university management and the South African apartheid regime. But because of the discordance that was to characterise the relations between the black radical section of NUSAS and the white liberal students, pertaining to the liberal approach of NUSAS, in 1969 Stephen Bantu Biko organised a walk out from NUSAS. Often termed the decade of mass protest, the 1960s rocked the universities of many industrial as well as industrialising nations. The founding of South African Student Organisation in 1969, like all other student and left-wing internationalism envisaged a world without class, racial or gender oppression-one that had triumphed over all forms of psychological alienation. SASCO on the other hand grew out of the reality of these historical conditions, South Africa as a kaleidoscope of shifting student political formations giving rise to a constantly new discourse on national and international politics, formed a fertile basis for SASCO post-apartheid to forge its new struggle for 'Free Quality Education'.
For a period in our burgeoning democratic dispensation, much effort and resources were directed towards the primary education sector, which resulted in higher education remaining in the shadows for a period of time. The argument was sound, it is imperative that a good foundation be laid for education from the very beginning. Children from very early on must be equipped with the correct buildings blocks for understanding, interpreting and finally creating knowledge. Having emerged from a very dark past of Bantu Education this made perfect sense.
5 December 2013
INSPIRED by the vigilance of previous generations of student activists who fought for education transformation under tougher conditions, GUIDED by the spirits of our fallen leaders amongst them Babalwa Ntabeni and Lincoln Morgan and MOTIVATED by the zeal and determination of toiling students across the land, WE the 1061 strong delegates to the 18th SASCO National Congress gathered from the 1st to the 5th of December at the University of Venda in Limpopo province.
Read more [PDF]
12 August 2014
The South African Students’ Congress has learnt with great concern the recent incidents of racism that have taken place in some of our institutions of higher learning. These incidents are evident to our long held position that South African universities continue to be preserves to perpetuate the legacy of our regrettable past. In South Africa we continue to have black and white universities, the later being for the privileged few and the former for the marginalized majority. This continues to be the case because of the blatant refusal by the powers that be in our institutions to transform these institutions.
6 August 2014
The Human Rights Commission released, what others considered as shocking results, that more than 500 cases of racism in our institutions were reported. Even though we are concerned as the South African Students’ Congress, we are not surprised by this outcome. In fact it is our firm view that many, more cases have not been reported. Just few days after this revelation, our country faces another racist incident that took place at the University of Pretoria, unsurprisingly.
4 August 2014
The South African Students' Congress enjoins all South Africans to join and participate in its One Million Signatures for Free Education Campaign. Our aim is to get a million South Africans to officially rally behind our call for Free Education. This campaign seeks to elevate the struggle for Free Quality Education in our country. Twenty years into democracy the racist legacy of Apartheid persist and is evident with the exclusion of hundreds of thousand of young African working class and poor youth from institutions of higher education and training.
As usual, debates in our National Executive Committee meeting were lively; heated but comradely. One of the liveliest of these discussions was the debate around the Free Education struggle in the face of pronunciations by the ANC and Presidency in the January 8th rally and the State of the Nation Address.
The Red Spark Theoretical Journal is a South African Students Congress publication issued quarterly to reflect and analyse contemporary issues that affect the society at large. We remain an independent student organisation that is rooted within the National Democratic Revolution as led by the reliable leader of the alliance, the ANC and our approach to matters affecting the ANC-led government and the mass democratic movement we will always use our CC (Contradictory-Complimentary) Approach when articulating our perspective to those issues.