‘They have opened their doors to black children at our expense’: Inanda Seminary’s lost monopoly

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Seminar Date
October 9, 2013
During the 1990s, institutional rot festered as Inanda Seminary failed to adapt to the changing nature of education in the post-apartheid era. The rot’s source can be traced to the negative ramifications of apartheid’s Bantu Education, first implemented during the 1950s. Over the decades, Bantu Education fostered a widening investment disparity between private and state schools designated only for Whites and the Seminary. As the strictures of Bantu Education relaxed during the 1980s, the Seminary’s most academically and financially capable students sought education at the historically advantaged, now multi-racial, schools. In the new political environment of the 1990s, the Seminary could not compete with more privileged schools and it therefore lost its monopoly on providing quality education for black girls. The disparity caused by apartheid combined with educational ‘freedom’ resulted in a ‘brain drain’ from the Seminary. The school hemorrhaged. As damaging as Bantu Education was to the Seminary, the school and its leadership were its own worst enemies. The school became a nest of conflicting constituencies and a kleptocracy. A frugal church and an uncreative Governing Council were together guilty of culpable inertia. This article chronicles the demise of the Seminary from 1990 to 1996.
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