In a recent article, a South Africa author highlights the frustrations of many Blacks associated with racial bullying. In the post-apartheid era the racial challenges continue to thwart any efforts for progress. Eliminating racial bullying will require transforming the perceptions that Whites have regarding Blacks.

In the article, the author points out how racial bullying is manifested. For example, the Department of Education in Mpumalanga suspended a principal and two teachers from Hoërskool Reynopark in Witbank after a teacher subjected a black student and his mother to racist bullying. In another incident, the Gauteng Education Department found the Curro Foundation School in Roodeplaat racially segregated students.

The author continues by ascertaining that the prestigious schools cater to White middle-class parents. These parents are more effective and successful in getting what they want for their children in these schools relative to black middle-class parents. On the other hand, Black parents have to involve either the Department of Education or the police to get some racially integrated schools to take their complaints seriously. They know that this is correct because a Black father of a matriculant who had been enduring racist bullying at an East Rand school had to open a case of common assault against his racist bullies.

It is evident, that the Whites in South Africa who desire to continue to perpetuate racism intend to use education as that vehicle. When jeopardized or confronted the only response is to resort to racial bullying.

Why would racist White South Africans resort to racial bullying?

Racial bullying is treating someone differently, or an offensive action against a person simply because of their skin color, culture, religion, nationality or ethnic origin.

What Black South Africans must understand is that racial bullying is the foundation of the apartheid culture for the country.

Under apartheid, the rights, associations, and movements of the majority Black population and other ethnic groups were curtailed by White minority rule. Apartheid used forms of systematic segregation which were established by the state authority in the South Africa country, against the social and civil rights of Blacks because they were Black.

The racial segregation in South Africa started in colonial times under the Dutch Empire, until 1795. Afterwards, the British took over the Cape of Good Hope. From 1960 to 1983, 3.5 million non-White South Africans were removed from their homes, and forced to live in segregated neighborhoods. Non-white political representation was abolished in 1970, and in the same year Black people were denied citizenship. The government continued the process of apartheid by segregating education, medical care, beaches, and other public services. They continued this process by providing Black people with services that were often inferior to those of White people.

White people in South Africa have long benefited from the fruits of apartheid. They have had an opportunity to build generations of wealth. They have had an opportunity to build a future for their families for which they believe in the post-apartheid era seems to be jeopardy. Since South Africa was built on racist bullying, they believe and have been taught that this is the vehicle for continued survival.

Now that they are in a post-Mandela era, White South Africans are more frightful of their future and the future of their families. At the inception of the post-apartheid era many people believed that democracy and Black majority rule in South Africa would bring chaos and bloodshed.

Overcoming racial bullying in South African schools will require:

  1. Use school media to portray the positive images and stories of South African Black students
  2. Begin an extensive training program that will result in a 80% Black teaching and education administrative force

Finally, institute a process that eliminates racial bullying in schools by promoting positive racial teacher student classroom relationships in South Africa.

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Dr. Derrick L. Campbell, Ed.D. PO Box 1668 Blackwood, NJ 08012


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Author of Promoting Positive Racial Teacher Student Classroom Relationships and Promoting Positive Racial Teacher Student Classroom Relationships: Methodology

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