Platinum and Passes The Impact of Mining Investments on Education Outcomes in South Africa

"Platinum mining is a major engine of South Africa’s economy, producing exports and generating employment for many South Africans. It is, however, highly dependent on skilled labour, engineers and technicians, who are drawn from the limited pool of graduates emerging from the weak South African schooling system. Public-private partnerships have been established to address this gap. This study looks at the delivery, effectiveness and impact of the ZAR1 100 million (about $14 million) Anglo American Platinum education programme implemented in the Limpopo and North West provinces to improve learning outcomes in public schools, particularly in the critical subjects of maths and science. The research reveals some surprising findings with regard to the effects that mines have on learning results in surrounding schools and affected communities. The study re-affirms many current theories and raises new questions with regard to the role of educators, the impact of interventions, socio-economic factors, and other aspects affecting the school system. Moreover, the report illustrates some of the problems and shortfalls of development evaluation common practices. The findings provide useful inputs for the policies, programmes and investments of the government and corporate sector in addressing education and development challenges in South Africa."