Ideological influences in the national curriculum statements for the further education and training band.
Since it assumed power in 1994, the government of South Africa had to meet the challenges of changing an education system that was established along racial lines. OBE and Curriculum 2005 were adopted into the school system. In the Further Education and Training Band Report 550 which was a 'cleansed' curriculum was introduced. The Framework for the Transformation of Further Education and Training in South Africa was published and promoted equality, economic competitiveness, redress, productivity and quality learning. On 28 October 2002 the draft National Curriculum Statements were published. The purpose of this study was to examine some of the policy intentions, influences and dominant ideologies in the FET policy documents. The study also examines the policy process and the recontextualization of policy discourses. A qualitative approach was used. Data was collected from questionnaires and interviews. The data obtained from the completed questionnaires and interviews was processed. The dominant ideology in the policy documents for English, Life Sciences, Mathematics and Physical Science were identified. The findings of the study shows that policy makers, designers and trainers adopted particular discourses that were at times aligned to the official policy discourse and at times they drew on new discourses based on their own histories, biographies and experiences of teaching in South African schools. Finally recommendations were made concerning the policy process in the form of three propositions: (i)Timing determined what was possible for the NCS: the policy development process was driven by a political need to deliver on a new curriculum; (ii) In a system that is not currently functioning efficiently, new policy initiatives exacerbate rather than reform the conditions on the ground; (iii) Government rationality was driven by a transformative agenda yet constrained by technicist management theories.