On Tuesday the Minister of Basic Education, Angie Motshekga, confirmed that her department is holding consultations over the country’s history curriculum.

The ministry will hold provincial consultative roadshows where ‘stakeholders and partner organisations will be consulted’.

Motshekga says the current curriculum was ‘not currently fit for purpose in “helping” children understand who they are’.

A department-assigned task team has recommended that history be made compulsory in grades 10-12 from 2024. Motshekga said that a draft curriculum is expected to be ready by mid-2022.

She added that the task team has been consulting historians, archaeologists, linguists, researchers, and academics to get input on the new curriculum.

Cheryl Weston, curriculum director in the department, said the new syllabi will be implemented in a phased approach in various grades ‘to almost ease in the revised history curriculum from 2024’.

According to Motshekga ‘The major challenge now, which is a massive exercise, is around the rewriting of history. Even the task team said, “you can’t present the current history as it is,” so it has to be rewritten,’ the minister said in October 2021.

Motshekga said the department would also have to find the money for new textbooks, and teachers would need to be retrained.