Pupils who write matric in a second language given ‘percentage boost’

2016-12-14 06:01

MATRICS whose mother tongue is not English or Afrikaans, but who study in these languages, will get three percent added to their final year exam marks until 2022.

Umalusi, the Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training, said in a statement yesterday all matric pupils who study in English as their second language will benefit from this policy in all their subjects.

After serious consideration of this matter, Umalusi Council decided to review its previous decision to phase out language compensation from 2014 to 2017, which entailed gradually scaling it down from four percent in 2014 to onepercent in 2017, said spokesperson Lucky Ditaunyane.

Ditaunyane said challenges experienced by pupils who were being taught in English prompted the introduction of a five percent language compensation in 2000.

He said since then, despite the Department of Basic Education’s genuine efforts to address gaps created by the use of English as Language of Learning and Teaching (LoLT), much work still remains to be done to completely eradicate language disparities in the system.

CEO of Umalusi, Dr Mafu Rakometsi, said in the statement that language, and in particular proficiency in the medium of instruction, was one of the most significant factors affecting pupil performance at school, especially given the fact that the majority of children study in a second language. “So, this is in essence a social justice matter. Unfortunately, in a complex and multilingual society like ours, language remains a vexing issue. However, as a quality council, we want the system to find ways to progressively rid itself of all inconsistencies created by the use of English as LoLT.” — Reporter.

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