Don't give up, MEC tells matrics
Johannesburg - Gauteng education MEC Barbara Creecy on Monday urged matriculants facing their final exams not to give up after a tough year.
"It's been an extremely difficult year. That's why we are still running camps. We are worried," Creecy told reporters in Johannesburg.
The National Senior Certificate exams are set to start on October 25 and end on December 3.
The year has been difficult for some children whose teachers went on strike to press for better wages for several weeks, in the crucial exam preparation period in August and early September.
Several provinces postponed preliminary exams as a result of the strike.
Asked what advice Creecy had for pupils affected by the strike, she replied: "I can only feed with them my own philosophy and that is, 'don't give up'. I haven't given up... and they mustn't give up either."
Creecy said learning camps would continue to run during the exams and over weekends for pupils with last minute questions.
"I think it was a very, very tough year. We've done what we can...
"We are confident that we will be able to ensure that the matric exams proceed smoothly," she said.
In Gauteng, a total of 117 097 candidates will write matric exams.
There are 1.3 million exam papers to be written at 793 examination centres.
Creecy warned that cheating during exams would be considered in a very serious light.
"We urge learners to conduct themselves with honesty during the exam. Cheating and other exam irregularities may result in a criminal record."
But so far, there had not been any reports of exam paper leaks.
"We're not planning any leaks," she added.
Results will be released on January 6.