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“We Need to be Careful to not Circulate the Same Black Professor Amongst Multiple Universities” – Jonathan Jansen

How to Fix South Africa's SchoolsWe Need to ActMail and Guardian‘s Amy Green recently chatted to Jonathan Jansen about the predominantly white staff at the Free State’s only medical school and the (complicated) road to the institution being a completely transformed space.

Jansen admits that the University of the Free State is far from where it should be, but explains that measures are in place to tackle this issue. A massive problem faced by tertiary institutions, however, is the small number of black professors to fill academic posts. “Poaching” staff from other universities is not the best solution, warns Jansen.

“We need to be careful to not circulate the same black professor amongst multiple universities – it might look good for us as UFS but that’s not progress on a national level,” Jansen says. He is currently in conversation with various role players to find the best possible solution to this dilemma.

Read the article to find out more about the UFS’s medical school and nationwide problem concerning transformation at tertiary institutions:

March 2015 saw a wave of student protests at universities across the country, starting with the University of Cape Town, where the flinging of faeces symbolised failed transformation – including at medical faculties and training hospitals.

Although the #RhodesMustFall campaign has been opposed by some, ongoing activism emphasises that a significant number of students and academics are concerned that institutionalised racism persists.

Transformation at medical faculties and training hospitals has been an ongoing struggle. The Free State’s public health system is not only controversial for its perceived inefficient and cash-strapped circumstances: the slow transformation at the province’s only medical school and attached training hospitals has also drawn criticism.

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