South African parents are “outsourcing” their kids’ school homework to ensure they receive good marks, according to a report in the Sunday Times.
The report provided an example of a man in Durban who will put together a science project for a learner for R200, which will receive a mark of over 80%.
These homework operations are all over social media, with people advertising their services to parents. This includes essay and speech writing.
Another example provided was university students who advertise school essay writing services for 60c a word on Gumtree.
Parents and teachers have slammed this practice, however, as school-based work makes up 25% of a child’s year mark. The remaining 75% comes from their exams.
With such a large chunk open to being influenced by learners paying others to do their homework, teachers and parents have called for a stop to the outsourcing.
One of the reasons is that it could encourage learners to “cheat their way to success”.
A parent who spoke to the Sunday Times said that kids are buying their way through school, and the “outsourcing of assignments flourished in most of Johannesburg’s wealthy suburbs”.
The report added that high schools confirmed the outsourcing of homework is not allowed and any parent who facilitated this had lost their moral compass.
Another risk was that students do not learn if they outsource their work, and this can lead to a poor performance in exams.
South Africa’s education sector has been under intense scrutiny for many years, with experts stating that the system is only interested in achieving a high matric pass rate as opposed to equipping students with knowledge and skills.
This is illustrated by the country’s large dropout rates in schools, with less than half of the students who start school actually passing matric 12 years later.