There were scenes of jubilation and relief at Independent Examinations Board (IEB) schools across the province on Thursday as pupils received matric results.
With a total of 15 180 candidates, the IEB reported an overall pass rate of 98.46% in the 2023 NSC exams, up from the 98.42% achieved in 2022.
At Somerset College, executive head Jacques Nel congratulated the class of 2023.
“Your unwavering commitment to tasks, perseverance, and consistent, intentional efforts have truly paid off, resulting in outstanding results.
“Each one of you has demonstrated resilience and dedication, setting a commendable standard for excellence.
“We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the devoted teachers who selflessly shared their knowledge and guidance, ensuring you were well prepared for success.
“Their commitment to your education has undoubtedly played a pivotal role in your accomplishments.”
Somerset College achieved a 100% university entrance pass rate and an average of 3.2 A-symbols achieved per student, where pupils featured among the top achievers nationally.
In a congratulatory message, Somerset College said it commended the 2023 cohort on the remarkable fortitude and resilience they have shown in navigating the Covid pandemic and many other challenges.
The Curro Group, with numerous campuses around the country as well as for the Curro Online school, had 2 296 pupils who wrote the 2023 IEB matric exam and achieved a pass rate of 99.15%.
The group reported that 66.58% of pupils achieved a minimum of a C-average and 9.25% learners achieved an A-average. The Curro Group also has several schools which wrote the NSC exams and will see their results released on Friday.
IEB chief executive Confidence Dikgole said that there may have been challenges and interruptions along the five-year journey of the pupils who had achieved their IEB NSC results, including the disruption to teaching and learning during the Covid pandemic.
“What, however, is not often talked about, is the tremendous pressure brought to bear on learners.
“Schools’ experience with young people points to the mental health issues, which is perhaps the one of the greatest challenges our youngsters face and does impact their ability to perform at their peak in a high-stakes examination.
“Mental well-being is directly linked to the stress society is placing on our young people to perform, to get top results and secure spots in top tertiary institutions. The competition is huge, and this is a global issue not just unique to the South African context. Research also points to a correlation between a learner’s independence and their overall well-being,” said Dikgole.