The Grade One achievement of 2046 South African children bearing traditional African names was compared with that of 1019 children from the same schools who were enrolled under English names. Results suggest that children bearing English names did significantly better in two of four subjects (Home Language and Mathematics) regardless of whether they were at school in an urban or rural context. For the remaining two subjects (Wealth and Religious Education), urban children bearing English names significantly outperformed urban children with traditional names. Consideration is given to the possibility that the marks teachers assign to children might in some way be influenced by the child's name type. Home and demographic variables are also explored but are of little assistance in explaining the results; the only significant difference is that children bearing English names-i.e, those faring better in Grade One-tend to have mothers with fewer years of schooling. Home and demographic variables do not, therefore, provide any obvious explanation for the results.
|Publication status||Published - Jul 1998|