Issue of matric results not being published heads to court

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A pupil at Excelsior Senior Secondary School in Cape Town.
A pupil at Excelsior Senior Secondary School in Cape Town.
Roger Sedres/Gallo Images via Getty Images
  • The Department of Basic Education says it will no longer publish matric results on media platforms.
  • The decision was taken as to not contravene the Protection of Personal Information Act.
  • With pending litigation challenging the decision, the department says it will not oppose the urgent application and will abide by the court's decision. 

The Department of Basic Education will not oppose an urgent court application challenging its decision to stop the practice of publishing matric results on media platforms.

Earlier this month, the department said it decided to stop publishing the National Senior Certificate results on media platforms.

News24 reported the department cited the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPI) as the reason, saying the dissemination of pupils' personal information would be in contravention of the act.

Following the announcement of the decision, the department said it had received representations from an array of organisations and people as well as an urgent court application on the matter.

Department spokesperson Elijah Mhlanga told News24 that AfriForum had gone to court to challenge the decision.

READ | Matric exam results won't be published on public platforms, in media - education dept

In a statement on Sunday, the department said it was guided by the need to comply with all the legal obligations, but in the final analysis, the Constitution commanded it to act in the best interest of pupils.

"In a quest to strike this delicate balance of complying with POPIA and act in the best interest of the learner, the department has been engaged with a number of role players, including the Information Regulator and the South African National Editors' Forum (SANEF)."

It added it would not oppose the pending litigation and would abide by the court's decision.

READ | Praise, outrage over education dept's move to stop publishing matric results in the media

"The department has communicated its position to stakeholders it has engaged, including SANEF and other parties.

"Meanwhile, the department urges candidates to register on the DBE website to view their results when they become available. Candidates will have to go through a two-step verification process before receiving confirmation of their registration. A 13-digit ID number and the examination number will be required for registration."

The department said more than 10 000 people had successfully registered by noon on Sunday.

The matric results are expected to be released on 21 January.

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