Manifestations of social closure in integrating state secondary schools.
This study considers the manifestations of social closure attitudes by pupils in the open white and Indian state secondary schools in the Durban and greater Durban areas. This study is contextualised with reference to the state's move towards semi-privatisation of the white state schools in South Africa, thus indicating a gradual shift from race to class subjectivities. Therefore, an argument is offered for the use of Parkin's social closure model which explains both race and class phenomena within the same explanatory framework. A multiple research strategy was used, with questionnaires being administered to 240 pupils, while interviews were held with 40 pupils. The viewpoints of both principals and teachers were also considered. Analyses of the results indicated that pupils of all three race groups (Africans, Indians and whites) displayed exclusionary attitudes. Furthermore, the admissions criteria used by the open schools were found to be operating under racist effects and served as an exclusionary device. The African pupils in this study formed part of a larger subordinate majority grouping and as such, displayed usurpationary attitudes, in terms of their aspirations and goals. "Speaking English" was found to be a salient category and served as a credential to gain access to advantages, and was also used as a justificatory basis for excluding other African pupils. This indicates evidence of dual closure. Finally, the middle class background of most of the African pupils within these open schools indicates that the open schools are catering for a very small sector of the African population. This will result in a small social category of "eligibles", while the majority of the African population will form part of the "ineligibles" or "outsiders", thus widening class inequalities within South African society.