Boys tops in matric distinctions

2011-01-04 00:00

WE might not know the answer to the age-old question of whether girls are cleverer than boys, but in the midlands it was males who showed the most academic prowess in the National Senior Certificate examination set by the Independent Examinations Board (IEB) for 2010.

David Bradford (17) from Michaelhouse, Coetzee Janse van Rensburg (18) from Hilton College, and Daniel Binion of Grace College (18) all made the outstanding achievers list. This means that the trio are among the 65 outstanding pupils who are ranked within the top five percent of all IEB pupils this year in six or more subjects. They also achieved a rating of over 80% in Life Orientation.

Daniel achieved eight distinctions for his nine subjects in 2010. He will know the results of his last subject, advanced maths, which is only released to schools today.

“I’m pretty relieved. I was worried about some of the subjects,” Daniel told The Witness modestly over the phone while holidaying with his family in Stanger.

Daniel’s nine subjects included maths 3.

His maths teacher and the deputy principal at Grace College, Alice Krusekopf, said Daniel has always been an independent and hard worker.

“Daniel is an absolute all-rounder. He is accomplished in sport. He played basketball, soccer and cricket at the school. He would probably not tell you this because he is so modest, but he actually got a letter of recommendation after making it in the top 30 000 for his SATs [an exam required for university entrance in the United States]”.

Daniel, whose parents work as missionaries in South Africa, will study electrical engineering at an American university.

For Coetzee, who is from Westville in Durban, his eight As came as a surprise.

“I’m very excited. I knew I would do well but I didn’t expect to do so well,” he told The Witness. He attributed his good results to hard work, determination and the ability to distance himself from stress. But celebrations have been put on hold for Coetzee as he is preparing for his new life as a student at Stellenbosch, where he will read actuarial science.

For David, who lives in Ferncliff in Pietermaritzburg, the year carried a lot of work but was fun as well. “I really enjoyed my matric year. We did a lot of partying. Everyone was turning 18. But you are also the big dogs and carry a lot of power.”

He believes that concentrating in class helped to relieve the pressure of doing last-minute swotting, as well as taking his the mid-year and trial exams as seriously.

He will study business science at the University of Cape Town.

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