National assessment results 'shocking'

2012-12-04 14:49

Johannesburg - Political parties expressed shock on Tuesday at the annual national assessment (ANA) results, and said they reflected badly on teachers.

The Democratic Alliance said the ANA results reflected an inequality gap in the education system.

"The assessments results imply that no-fee schools perform poorly compared to fee-paying schools," said DA Gauteng education spokesperson Khume Ramulifho.

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga released the ANA results on Monday.

They showed that Grade 9 pupils had performed poorly in maths, scoring an average mark of 13%. The provincial maths marks ranged from 9% to 17%.


Ramulifho said the inequalities meant quality education was given to those who had the money to pay for their children's education.

"The DA believes that children must be afforded an opportunity to access quality education regardless of their background."

He said the government had to introduce an allowance to supplement the salaries of teachers who had a good knowledge of scarce subjects, or who produced excellent results in under-performing schools.

"This will provide learners from poor backgrounds access to quality learning and opportunities for advancement."

The African National Congress Youth League said the poor results in maths and literacy meant its goal of "achieving economic freedom in our lifetime" was challenged.

"How can we achieve economic freedom when our future leaders have difficulty reading, writing and counting?" it asked.

"We believe that more emphasis has to be placed on access to quality education and the development of entrepreneurial skills amongst young people."

The ANCYL said the department had to shift gears and improve the state of basic education.


The results were presented as a diagnostic tool so that interventions could be made.

"We request a comprehensive plan with real targets so we can evaluate performance against these next year in order to ascertain real progress made."

The Inkatha Freedom Party said the results reflected badly on teachers, especially if pupils were not able to read or count.

"We are calling for further, effective teacher in-service programmes for teachers - not the current touch-and-go programmes - and for improvement in school infrastructure so that teachers are able to provide better teaching to pupils in secure environments," said IFP education spokesperson Alfred Mpontshane.

Without well-trained teachers, the education system would continue to be a disaster and the education department would not achieve its target of 60% of pupils passing numeracy and literacy tests with a mark of at least 50% by 2014, he said.

  • Gordon20 - 2012-12-04 14:56

    The best 3 years of my life was std 8!

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-12-04 16:04


      johan.lombaard.3 - 2012-12-04 16:46

      Have anybody think of it that 80% of the grade9's have an IQ of less than 90?? And thats why they will never get more than 10%??

      theo.schoeman.71 - 2012-12-04 17:36

      A few years ago Mr Mbeki and Minister beetroot was crucified for the HIV debacle. They were blamed for destroying thousands of lives. What we now see happening in education is no different... thousand of young peoples lives are being destroyed by our current President and Minister of Education.

  • corne.coetzee.92 - 2012-12-04 14:57

    No accountability......That is the biggest problem faced by a democratic South Africa.

      smit.jacques - 2012-12-04 15:40

      Let the teachers write an annual exam with a 90% pass rate. fail exam = no job next year..

      stirrer.stirrer - 2012-12-04 17:07

      This can be partly blamed on the outcomes based education shyte. The assessment results are proof that there was no outcome, therefore no education.

      mc.segal.5 - 2012-12-06 09:23

      Nocomes cant blame the pupils/learners though

  • kalabafazi - 2012-12-04 15:09

    Here again we can see the if you don't have money the governemt does not give a damn about you. The fat, lazy, incompetent Angie Motshekga should be dragged into the street and be publically humiliated. She has jeopardised the lives of thousands of children by not ensuring that they have access to a proper education.

      koos.vandermerwe.75 - 2012-12-04 15:41

      I sort of disagree a little. First of those schools are NOT for free cause I pay for them. Secondly when I was at school the teacher was there to help NOT to spoon-feed. You had to study on your own and almost all of the examples in the text books where pretty much self explanatory. I'd go as far as to say that I would have preferred to study on my own and go to school once a week to sort out questions. Now in university you are not spoon-fed at all and you are expected to study on your own and only approach someone if you really don't understand. Lecturers just read what is in the books in any case. I can't see how the teachers can carry all the blame here. You must really be as dumb as a brick to score below 20%.

      koos.vandermerwe.75 - 2012-12-04 15:54

      P.S. Just a little side note. I sit with scores of the new generation of so called "free borns" some with ternary qualifications and I don't know what to do with them because they are well... mostly useless. Some things just cannot be taught. Now what are you supposed to do? How are you supposed to manage anything? You simply cannot run a country like this and expect everything to (by some miracle) turn out A-OK. Compared to the Mozambican and Zimbabwean quality I see, SA has a BIG problem.

      bev.lundie - 2012-12-04 17:29

      Since our leaders are leading with little or no educational background living in R200+ million houses and driving the latest luxury cars ... why do we think for one moment that our youth would not want the same instant gratification? They are following by example! If there is any hope for a change of attitude it would have to come from the top - the I want everything for doing nothing has to stop or we will have a generation of utterly useless kids.

  • celeste.delange1 - 2012-12-04 15:10

    Well if you consider that the bulk of teachers in this country cannot read or write, and we have an education system that has proven to be a massive failure in other countries, what did we expect?? I put my kids in a school where two thirds of my salary goes for school fees so they can at least learn to read. In the previous school they were half way through grade 1 and could not even write their own names let alone read or count because the teacher was either off sick (3 days a week) or busy with "baseline" assessments (which are done for the first two weeks of school).

      theo.schoeman.71 - 2012-12-04 17:28

      Not only the bulk of teachers cannot read or write... Our so called leaders including Shower man and Juliars cant either. A very sad situation indeed

  • strikeback.strikeback - 2012-12-04 15:18

    It serves no purpose to make a statement like "quality education was given to those who had the money to pay for their children's education". We all can work that one out. The question government should ask themselves is "What should we as government do to improve the quality of education in the non-paying schools"? After all it is their responsibility. To downgrade the other schools and overcrowd them, will just lead to lower standards. Stop acting surprised. What did you think was going to happen when you failed to provide learners with books on time and allowed teaching staff to run around in the streets like uneducated fools. Get your act together, that is why people elect you, even if they don't know it some times.

      brasteve.myaluze - 2012-12-04 15:25

      i agree. Those that are without the money are supposed to benefit from the taxpayers, but alas! We have more pressing issues to spend money the Nkandla upgrade

      stirrer.stirrer - 2012-12-04 17:10

      The difference is that in a fee-paying school, the teachers are accountable to the parents. In a non-fee-paying school, there is zero accountability. The teachers don't have to do anything, they still get paid by government. Fire them, starting with the principals, who are supposed to ensure that the teachers do their job (and actually pitch up).

  • ronald.stilianou - 2012-12-04 15:18

    Angie!, YOU are squarely to blame, you're an incompetent fool.

  • ronald.stilianou - 2012-12-04 15:20

    This is it, education is the ONLY way, not bee AA and all the others.

  • brasteve.myaluze - 2012-12-04 15:22

    Unfortunately we continue to fare badly especially on maths compared to other countries. Part of the problem is that our government takes pride in the fact that we are among the highest spending countries on education. Sadly, there are a number of issues that this does not take into account. Firstly, some of that money is eroded in corruption and wasteful expenditure. In reality if the minister spent a million on a ministerial car, it does not add value to educating the country. Secondly, and most importantly, if you spend a fortune on rubbish, you just get expensive rubbish. This refers to our crap curriculum

      nic.nomicos.3 - 2012-12-04 18:59

      Hear hear....

  • lynn.syme.1 - 2012-12-04 15:24

    But they all know where to put the X on the ballot paper!

      stirrer.stirrer - 2012-12-04 17:11

      "X" is the only letter of the alphabet some of them know. In Piet Retief's day, this is how Dingaan signed his name.

  • Martha1234 - 2012-12-04 15:30

    What a tragic situation for South Africa. Not only should she be fired but also criminally prosecuted! Also, maybe the ANCYL (and all the other youth leagues) should take their heads out their asses and fight for our education system. Education is the only way they will get their "economic freedom".

  • Genesistt - 2012-12-04 15:31

    Are they only realising this now?! People, the education system has been going down the drain for years! When the teachers start striking again, tell them they'll get paid based on how their students perform.

  • werner.dippenaar.77 - 2012-12-04 15:31

    Now the ANC will cook the results to suit their agenda.

  • zoe.mandlana - 2012-12-04 15:31

    What the teachers have anything to do with education crisis in SA. Who frequently changes the curriculum and come up with ridiculous. Policies? Politicians are in shock, you mean after all these years they were waiting for a miracle hoping everything will just fix it's self. Who ignored all the academics and deploy Cadres? Stop playing this dumb blame thing and come up with solutions.

  • mahlorislash - 2012-12-04 15:33

    They are busy chating and sexting. Ask them about sex positions and text abbreviations, they will pass with flying colours.

  • sisie.indola - 2012-12-04 15:35

    Stop comparing Public to Private - just because there are people out there who can and will afford to give their children the very best education that they can afford does not mean that a Public education is bad - there have been many cases where the children have overcome the disadvantage and have been educated beyond expectations. The responsibility lies with the teachers and the Education Minister to improve this standard - bring back an education system that worked - do not dumb it down - the 1976 riots were for an EQUAL education for all, the indigenous population wanted the same as the white scholars, so give it to them - it was a system that worked. Bring back religion (everyone's - so that all can learn about the other religions) bring back PT, respect for teachers (if you are found to be having sex for grades - fire them outright)- get the boys minds out of the gutter and get them to abstain from sex with girls, whether it's rape or what, punishment for wrong doing - whether its cleaning the grounds or planting trees. But this system where scholars think they rule the roost has got to stop - unless they are prepared to accept the responsibility for teaching and running the school. Teachers need to teach, they need to instill respect for oneself and others. Stop trying to break records and giving yourselves bonuses and raises rather focus on the education of the children - it is not a race to prove one is better than someone else.

      suash - 2012-12-04 15:45

      Well said

      nic.nomicos.3 - 2012-12-04 18:48, you hit the nail on the head and what's more it's not a case of a shortage of money even though millions are squandered and go just needs to be channeled correctly....

  • gavin.knox.56 - 2012-12-04 15:35

    The one who started this rot is now in charge of the department that will oversee the SKA Project.... The outcome of which will be interesting, thank God the Aussies also have a say here.....

  • craig.thom.376 - 2012-12-04 15:37

    I do not see what is so shocking about this,these are normal findings that I think most people know,time for government to pull the finger out of the proverbial

  • jairaj.sureschandra - 2012-12-04 15:44

    The results actually reflect badly on the ANC, who refuses to listen to reason. Don't blame the teachers and the education department as they must simply do as they are told by the "unlearned" Politicians.

  • sophia.kapp - 2012-12-04 15:49

    There is a government intervention programme called QIDS-UP that channels billions (yes, more than mere millions) into schools in poor areas. Additional teachers are employed, money is set aside for libraries, and additional educational material is provided for kids in these schools. Believe me, I used to work for one of the provincial education departments and I have seen the figures. They are mind-boggling. We officially have one of the most expensive education systems in the world. The problem is not money and never has been. The problems are terrible work ethics, poorly and insufficiently qualified teachers, absenteeism, and unions protecting bad educators. There is a lesson here to all involved: If you're not willing to identify the actual problems, you will never be able to solve them.

      nic.nomicos.3 - 2012-12-04 18:25

      Sophia, deserve a

  • ben.louw.5 - 2012-12-04 15:53

    Angie Motshekga is one useless person. I remember seeing her and her cronies stand up and applaud the day she announced the new pass rate beginning of the year... Pass mark being 30% now... Wow... South Africa...where failure is celebrated...

      ben.louw.5 - 2012-12-04 16:39

      Said it before...I'll say it again...

      nic.nomicos.3 - 2012-12-04 18:21

      @Ben, I'm with you there, the cretin may celebrate the 30% but can't she work it out for herself that this means that 70% HASN'T BEEN LEARNED !!! ***FACE-PALM OF NOTE***

  • jo.vankatwijk - 2012-12-04 15:56

    The blame lies at the feet of the ANC and the ministers who have been in charge of education. If white people were so advantaged with their education why on earth was that system and syllabus tampered with? Teaching Grade 1's the three R's does not involve culture or racism. Teaching Grade 9's Mathematics has nothing to do with culture or racism either. I wish I could knock some sense into the heads of those responsible. Maybe, just maybe, I'll come back as a Maths teacher again in another life ;-)

  • grant.montgomery.5074 - 2012-12-04 16:09

    People arequicto say how bad bantu uducation was was but at least school leavers coul do the basics.

      Erna - 2012-12-04 16:37

      At least the teachers in those days were proud and dedicated.

  • gareth.p.randall - 2012-12-04 16:24

    Lets Blame the teachers. Yes. That seems like a great Idea. No Stupid people. Blame the retard pupils and idiot parents. That's where the true problem is. No matter what teachers you have, if the pupils don't want to learn or too stupid to learn there is nothing that can be done.

      rayno.grever - 2012-12-04 18:13

      True. Some people can grasp concepts... Others JUST CAN'T

  • steve.ritchie.739 - 2012-12-04 16:27

    Did the cANCer youth league really think that Angie and poker-face Blade would bring them an education, when between them they probably can't spell the word. You see cANCer youth league, the government's big plan is to keep you uneducated, stupid and poor, so that they can become dictators and rule you by fear and indoctrination. Old habits die hard and maybe the youth league should add their voices to things like quality education, etc instead of running around like chickens with their heads chopped off.

  • Khofu - 2012-12-04 16:48

    Sadly, this vindicates Dr. Mamphele Ramphele,s statement. Education is, and will for a long time, be a reality only for those who can take their kids to private and suburban schools. An illiterate population serves certain hegemonic agendas well. Sad reality.

  • trudiroos.potter - 2012-12-04 16:59

    Who do we have to thank? Firstly Kader Asmal for introducing OBE,, "leaders" like Zuma and Malema for the moral decay and ill-discipline that they have been showing. Tell us how to discipline learners please.......

      jo.vankatwijk - 2012-12-04 19:52

      When OBE was introduced most of us, in education, knew that the system was doomed.

  • Malose-Nyatlo - 2012-12-04 17:03

    Poor teachers, made to carry the can for poor education policies! It's no secret that our learners pass through the entire primary education without any meaningful assessment. It's only just before they enter high school that they get assessed in literacy and numeracy to get a picture of what happened in their first nine years of learning. When get a rude awekening that they can hardly do basic Math, the teachers carry the blame. But the rot set in long before and couldn't be picked up because in these grades learners cannot fail - they call that cohort progression!

  • Fumani Goldwin Mashau - 2012-12-04 17:17

    this problem can only be solved if ministers kids can attend public schools .

      nic.nomicos.3 - 2012-12-04 17:42

      Good point Fumani....

  • bev.lundie - 2012-12-04 17:20

    Perhaps our country should take some tips from Finland...

  • JohnnoBfree - 2012-12-04 18:55

    Philamon is in a tv game show and the host asks him what 2 plus 4 is. Philamon say eish very difficult but I think the answer is 7. Sorry wrong answer the tv host says. The crowd goes wild and shouts give pkilamon a chance give philamon a chance. Next question for R500 what is 3 plus 5. Philamon asnwers 9 and the tv host say sorry philamonbut that is the wrong answer. The crowd goes wild and shouts give Philamon a chance give Philamon a chance. Final question the tv host asks what is 4 plus 4. Philamon thinks and thinks and says 8. And the crowd goes balstic shouting give Philamon a chance, give Philamon a chance. Eish!

  • JohnnoBfree - 2012-12-04 18:55

    Philamon is in a tv game show and the host asks him what 2 plus 4 is. Philamon say eish very difficult but I think the answer is 7. Sorry wrong answer the tv host says. The crowd goes wild and shouts give pkilamon a chance give philamon a chance. Next question for R500 what is 3 plus 5. Philamon asnwers 9 and the tv host say sorry philamonbut that is the wrong answer. The crowd goes wild and shouts give Philamon a chance give Philamon a chance. Final question the tv host asks what is 4 plus 4. Philamon thinks and thinks and says 8. And the crowd goes balstic shouting give Philamon a chance, give Philamon a chance. Eish!

  • RudiErnst - 2012-12-04 21:39

    Feel the power of your vote, people.

  • sabine.dittmann - 2012-12-04 22:42

    I think it's not the teacher's fault! Kids need support from home and if their parents can't support them, they need a kind of "homework- and study-support" at/from school. Just start voluntary - extra - lessons (maybe from students or any other "good souls") and stop blaming anybody! Nobody is gonna help anybody by just complaining - ACT! DO something to help the kids! They ARE our future!

  • lwpretorius - 2012-12-05 02:09

    Why do we always blame a few for these disasters? It requires the collusion of many to OK any puterate system. When we blame Kader Was Crazy for the OBE system, surely some other 'experts' had to go along with this crap. I know of one expert that has defended this system on television. Yes our friend G Bloch. He has since placed some distance between himself and now comments as an expert for etv on education matters. But what about other educators? Are they at present satisfied with the CAPS system (CRAPS system)? What about those that are caught in the present shiite system? I specifically look at our maths curricula, and we suck and blow at the same time. Our kids are beyond salvage under the present educators.

  • rory.n.price - 2012-12-05 09:19

    A lot of the good teaches have already left, thousands in the UK, don't blame them

  • jamesrw.wadsworth - 2012-12-08 09:54

    Oh come on guys, since 1994 the ANC have had every opportunity to get the school system jacked to improve the lives of previously disadvantaged, but they are only interested in improving the lives of MEC's and their ilk. Renaming streets, whole towns etc, at the expense of children, is an absolute joke. Limpopo children could not even get text books for the better part of the school year. Teachers should be qualified and competent to do their jobs. Pay them decent salaries, not incentives. If they do not want to do their jobs, or unable, then the government has a problem!

  • littlejohn.galloway - 2012-12-12 20:38

    Horrific, South Africa failed a generation.

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