'Progressed learners' could affect matric pass rate

2017-01-04 18:01
Angie Motshekga. (Nico Gous, Netwerk24)

Angie Motshekga. (Nico Gous, Netwerk24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - More than 100 000 "progressed learners" could have a significant impact on the National Senior Certificate pass rate, which Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga is expected to announce on Wednesday evening.

Get your matric results on News24

The 2015 matric pass rate fell to 70.7%, from 75.8% in 2014.

Preliminary figures the Department of Basic Education released in October suggested that the class of 2016 included more than 100 000 progressed pupils.

The biggest jump was in KwaZulu-Natal, where the figure increased from 10 633 in 2015, to 28 036 this year.

The department’s Dr Rufus Poliah referred to the "progressing" of pupils during a technical briefing ahead of the results announcement in Midrand.

They are those pupils who fail the same grade twice and are then promoted to the next grade. Poliah stressed that, in the NSC, standards would not be relaxed.

"Progressing learners to other grades is to ensure learners don't get frustrated and drop out. It allows them to stay in the system.  However, progressed learners must still meet the requirements of the NSC to pass. They aren't pushed through," he said.

"If a person fails a grade twice, there is no value in retaining the learner in that grade. The learner must be progressed and supported in terms of the knowledge deficit that he or she has accumulated over the years."

Progression could have a significant effect on the overall NSC result. The number of progressed pupils has increased significantly from last year. A total of 43 071 more pupils were progressed in 2016.

READ: Education dept stands by 2016 matric results

'Adjustments made as a matter of routine'

DA MP Gavin Davis first raised doubts last week, when he wrote an open letter to the CEO of education quality assurance body Umalusi, Dr Mafu Rakometsi, questioning the way some matric marks were increased, if raw mark averages were lower than previous years.

This was based on his observation of Umalusi’s verification process. Raw marks are the marks pupils get in their exams. A drop in the average was attributed to a very difficult exam question or paper.

Conversely, if marks were higher than normal, they were kept as they were.

"It would be interesting to hear, in the case of each adjustment, what made that case exceptional. Because it seemed to me, as an observer, that some adjustments were made as a matter of routine, rather than exception," Davis told News24.

READ: Shift focus from matric results to primary schooling - Equal Education

The department said it might take three to five years to get the pass rate on an upward trend again, because of changes in the education system.

Read more on:    education  |  matric 2016

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Partner Content
What all investors should know about index investing

Index-linked investments are growing fast in popularity globally, and are growing in size and complexity too.

Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.


7 weirdly awesome pets you can own

If you think it’s too boring to own a cat or a dog, consider getting one of these pets.



Pack theory: fact or fiction?
Perfect dog-walking 1: Why dogs pull on the lead
SA stats: The role of pets in families
The top 6 poisonous foods for your pet
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.