Research Department

Equal Education is excited to fill the following vacancies!

Researcher x 2 

  • Researcher: oversight and education funding (Khayelitsha, Cape Town)
  • Researcher: spatial access (Boksburg, Gauteng)

About the organisation

Equal Education (EE) is a youth-led mass democratic movement of learners, post-school youth, parents, teachers, and community members who use mobilisation and public action, supported by careful research, to empower young activists and ensure equality in South African education. EE is organised in five provinces: Eastern Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, and the Western Cape. As a movement of young education activists, EE works by identifying systemic and localised problems affecting the provision and quality of schooling and holding public actors mandated to address these issues to account.

The Research and Policy Department is central to EE’s advocacy and activism as it informs EE’s evidence-based provincial and national campaigns and strategies through primary and secondary research, shapes and contributes to public discourse on critical national educational issues through media advocacy and popular education, and influences policy reform and oversight through submissions and monitoring of national and provincial spaces. EE research falls into four broad thematic areas that are informed and guided by members’ lived experiences. As the nerve centre of the movement, the department works in collaboration with EE’s youth organising departments, communications, and the Equal Education Law Centre (EELC).

About the role

Equal Education (EE) seeks to appoint two (2) suitably qualified researchers to join its research and policy team in the oversight and education funding, and spatial access thematic, respectively. The oversight and education funding theme includes our parliamentary and legislature monitoring, public procurement, budget literacy, and budget advocacy work, which is best suited to someone with a strong economics background or experience. The spatial access theme covers overcrowding, admissions, scholar transport, and privatisation; this is a junior researcher role. Researchers are expected to contribute to a dynamic collaborative environment by working with members of the research team, as well as other departments within the movement wherever possible.

Reports to: Head of Research
Positions: One Researcher: oversight and education funding (Khayelitsha, Cape Town) AND one Researcher: spatial access (Boksburg, Gauteng)

Salary range: R264 000 – R340 000 per annum
Closing date: 14 July 2023

Minimum requirements:

• A degree – preferably at postgraduate level in Education, Social Sciences, Economics, Law or equivalent tertiary qualifications;
• One to two years of work experience in the same or a similar role;
• Proven track record in conducting research, writing and editing;
• Fluent in English (spoken and written);
• Proficiency in other South African languages would be an advantage;
• Knowledge of the South African education system and education policy or previous experience in a social movement or community-based organisation would be beneficial;
• Must be able to work efficiently and independently, and manage multiple projects concurrently.

Key responsibilities 

• Leading on primary and secondary research related to thematic area;
• Producing analysis and original, locally relevant research for EE for both internal and external use;
• Forming relationships with other stakeholders in the education sector;
• Translating research reports into outputs that range from the formal, such as policy briefs and discussion documents, to popular education materials including factsheets and pamphlets;
• Drafting media statements, op-eds for newspapers, and content for social media;
• Supporting community engagement in relevant EE offices, including visiting schools in the province;
• Facilitating workshops or making presentations internally and externally;
• Collaborate with the EELC in drafting legal documents;
• Monitoring of local and international education news, education research, education policy and law reform related to thematic area; and
• Drafting submissions to Parliament, provincial legislatures or the relevant government departments.

Equal Education is an equal-opportunity employer and does not discriminate based on race, colour, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, or any other status protected by law. Successful candidates must have a strong commitment to social justice and human rights; be committed to strengthening the education system in South Africa; and invest time and energy to address the inequality that affects so many young people.

Application process

•A complete application includes a cover letter, curriculum vitae and a one-page writing sample. Documents should be in pdf format with your name and the type of document included in the title, i.e.
• You must indicate clearly in your cover letter and email subject line, which position you are applying for.
• You should motivate specifically for the position you are applying for, detailing your interest and suitability to work at EE.
• Please include a minimum of three contactable references.

Applications must be sent to

Leanne Jansen-ThomasResearch Department