Matric figures are correct - department

2011-01-07 11:17
Johannesburg - An article that claims the 2010 matric pass rate was actually 57% was based on wrong calculations, the basic education department said on Friday.

"The matric pass rate we have given of 67.8% is absolutely correct based on the method we have been using over the past 16 years," spokesperson Granville Whittle told Sapa.

The Sowetan's front page on Friday read: "WRONG ANGIE Now repeat after Sowetan: 279033 643546= 43% failed, the real pass rate is 57%."

Whittle said the newspaper had used the wrong method to calculate the percentage.

"They took the total number of learners registered to write exams and included part-time candidates (repeat candidates who failed previously) to do their calculation.

"Learners who failed before only write subjects that they failed and this number is not included in the total figure," explained Whittle.

Sowetan calculations 'correct'

Editor Bongani Keswa maintained that their calculations were correct.

"Our percentage is correct. The department are using their own formula and we are using our own formula."

He said their figure was calculated in an "editors' analysis".

Keswa said the journalists who penned the story had contacted the department spokesperson for comment but he was not available.

Whittle said the department was questioning the motives behind the report.

He said the department was not planning to take legal action but expected an apology.

"They owe us that much... the department is upset and the thousands of learners who worked hard must be equally upset."

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