LIMITED EDITION: Autographed hardback binding version by the author, Hans Pietersen.
There’s a god in my school case: The Ogod story tells of the nine year struggle to force South African public schools to adhere to national legislation. The matter grabbed the attention of the public and legal professionals alike and was the first court challenge to the Christian hegemony still prevalent in South African schools.
The SA Schools Act of 1996 forbid public schools to be sectarian, yet many of the approximately 24 000 public schools to date still adhere to the practices, if not the letter, of the Christian National Education ideology of the earlier apartheid government. The status quo is defended by school governing bodies, various supportive organisations, and individuals, including many misguided teachers.
The matter originated with the proselytising of the author’s triplets during their first year at school in Stellenbosch in 2008, and culminated in the verdict of the watershed OGOD vs Randhart and Others matter in June 2017, reported as far as Yemen. The leader of the movement and the parents involved were hounded and vilified for their insistence on cultural redress. As is often the case in such matters, the struggle for religious neutrality in public spaces is bound to be resisted by cultural ideologues and proselytising zealots for years to come.
The main events, role players, context and background of the matter is discussed in a delightfully acerbic tone, right up to and including the High Court verdict and a vision of the future.