Can COVID-19 bring about 20/20 acuity in education scholarship in South Africa?


  • Prof C. C. Wolhuter North-West University, South Africa



COVID-19 pandemic, Education, Education research, Education theory, South Africa


This leading article to this special issue on “COVID-19: Opportunity to rethink and to restructure education in the world” is an overarching position paper, drawing on contributions made in papers in this issue, to argue the case that there is a compelling need to overhaul education research, in South Africa in particular, and that the COVID-19 pandemic has created an opportunity to do so. The South African education scene is surveyed and the survey reveals enormous challenges along all three dimensions of education supply: quantitative, qualitative and equality. The education sector in South Africa is clearly in need of guidance from the education research community. Education research activity, globally and in South Africa in particular, is surveyed and found to be seriously wanting in terms of the lack of theory, autochthonous and a unified, coherent theory, the small scale and fragmented nature of many research projects, the lack of practical impact, education scholars eschewing subscription to and building a normative superstructure in their research and the concrete problems of the education faculty regarding heavy teaching loads and difficulty in attracting funding for education research. The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ravages it has brought to education have created the need and the opportunity to urgently and enthusiastically attend to these desiderata in Education scholarship.


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How to Cite

Wolhuter, C. (2021). Can COVID-19 bring about 20/20 acuity in education scholarship in South Africa?. Perspectives in Education, 39(1), 1–11.