LETTER TO THE EDITOR | Matric paper rewrite: Don't punish learners

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Pupils preparing to write an exam paper.
Pupils preparing to write an exam paper.
Kayleen Morgan

Wimpie Immelman writes about what the consequences are for the company that was used to publish the matric papers that were leaked and why it is the children that are being punished and not the department. 


As a parent of a matric learner I am angry with the decision the department took to rewrite these exam papers.

The rewrite of the exam papers must not be used as a remedy to fix the inefficiencies of the Department of Education. The department failed in its duties to safeguard the exam papers and action should be taken against the department and it is not fair that learners should be punished for that. I would like to know what agreement if any there is between the department and the businesses that get appointed to print these exam papers, regarding the confidentiality and safeguarding of these papers and what consequences if they failed to do it, as it appears to me there is nothing in place.

Those printing businesses should not be paid for services rendered till after the exams. This is not the first time that this has happened, and an independent body must investigate the practices that are in place in ensuring the papers are not leaked, as the current mechanisms in place appear to be inadequate. The minister, Angie Motshekga, must apologise to all matric leaners and parents for the inefficiencies within her department regarding the safeguarding of the exam papers.

READ | Mandy Wiener: Matric rewrites: Is this really the best decision?

The time frame given to my son to rewrite these papers is unacceptable.

He writes his IT exam on 14 December, 14:00 to 17:00, and then he must rewrite his maths paper the next day, 15 December 14:00 to 17:00, and then on 17 December he will rewrite science 2 from 09:00 to 12:00. Now you tell me how he will be more prepared for his exam than what he was when he first wrote it with the knowing that he must do work over that he already finished? This is demoralising.

None of the learners should rewrite these exams so that it can backfire on the department and be a lesson for the department to do its work. The moment the learners re-write these exams it opens the door for the department to sweep the matter under the carpet.

Since I do not think that I will receive any feedback from the education department, I decided to send this letter to the media as well as to OUTA so that they can investigate that all monies spend be recouped from the guilty parties and not from taxpayers.

- Wimpie Immelman, Brackenfell.

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