Matric’s heartbreak

2011-02-18 00:00

A 17-YEAR-OLD high school pupil from Gamalakhe is still traumatised after he was moved from grade 12 back to grade 11 when the school he attended realised a “technical oversight” on his report card at the end of last year.

Malusi Nqoko’s 2010 report card for his grade 11 year reads “promoted” and he happily began the new year on January 19 as a grade 12 student.

During his first week back at Gamalakhe Commercial High School, the principal, M.P. Bohlela, approached him and informed him of the mistake, saying that his mother would be asked to come to the school for a meeting to explain the situation.

Malusi, who was teased by fellow pupils who thought that he had “promoted himself”, had failed Zulu as his first language and has to repeat grade 11.

He has since moved to Galeni High School to complete his grade 11 year because he says he cannot handle the teasing and bullying he received at Gamalakhe Commercial.

His mother, Mumsy Nqoko, is very worried about him.

“Two members of the school, including the principal, signed off the report, so how can they say that it was a technical problem?”

Malusi acknowledged that it had been a very difficult time.

“It has not been easy to return to grade 11; I had plans for the future to do my tertiary education after matric,” he said. “Now I have doubts that I will even make it at all because people view me as a bad person who passed himself.”

Malusi added that he is saddened by the way that the school had treated him.

“The person who should have been by my side [Bohlela] let me down,” said the visibly shaken boy. “It is very difficult, but I am trying to cope.”

Bohlela said that while he does feel sorry for Malusi, he has a responsibility to maintain a standard at the school.

“It is the first time we have had an instance like this and it was a technical error that we did not see at the time,” he said.

“There are certain requirements for a pass; if we had allowed him to proceed, then any kid who did not pass Zulu would come to us asking to be moved up.”

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