Merging identities : a narrative inquiry into educators' experiences of the merging process of further education and training (FET) colleges in South Africa and the extent to which the merger has impacted on their identity development.
The Further Education and Training (FET) sector in general and the public Further Education colleges specifically are in a state of perpetual transition. The merger as an attempt at restructuring and transforming public Further Education and Training colleges presents many challenges to its educators. This narrative inquiry explores four educators' subjective experiences of the merging process with a view to attempting to understand the effect this process may have had on their identity development and/ or the renegotiation of their social identities. The researcher who is also the quality manager at a FET college, is presented with the opportunity to reflect critically on her own experiences and identity development while actively engaging with other participants' narratives about their experiences of the merging process. A strong perception of the college as an oppressive environment emerged from the findings. The merger was evidently a catalyst for the different levels of awareness, introspection and renegotiation of participants' identities.