'Unnecessary pressure' - parents and pupils react to news that Matric exams brought forward

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Following a special meeting held by Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga and MECs on Wednesday, the Department of Basic Education has announced that the 2021 National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations are being brought forward.

This is because three exams clash with the municipal elections. Matrics were poised to write their English, Business Studies and Non-Official Language Paper 1 final exams on 1 November but these have now been moved forward to 27 and 28 October. 

Also see: 'The dropout rate has tripled': Too many students are 'falling through the cracks of the education system'

Parents, pupils and teachers have all had strong reactions to this news, with some asking if an election is more important than children's education.

"And our Government wonders why the youth are not qualified to be employed?" commented one dad of three, James, on Twitter.

Another, Gobetse, asked why this move was necessary, since many matriculants are not yet of voting age. 

On Facebook, Matthew wrote that the government is valuing politics over education, saying he fears for the youth of today, while Tiegovic wrote that "...they will use schools as voting stations! That is a violation of the Rights to Education!"

He adds that politicians must leave Grade 12s to write their final exams in peace with no distractions, and the elections must wait.

Don't miss: Education interrupted: Time to talk about the future of our children

Janine wrote that the matrics and all school children have had a terrible time, with lockdowns, quarantining, and so on, adding "How the hell can the government put this extra pressure on them?" 

Terrence asked why not delay the exams instead of bring them forward? "So much unnecessary pressure for these students it's just not intelligent," he wrote.

Nonetheless, Josephine wrote that final exams always started at the end of October, "so I don't see the issue here". 

What do you think, will this have a negative impact on 2021's matriculants?

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