Durban - National Teachers' Union president Allen Thompson said the matric results released yesterday were the result of teachers doing everything within their power to ensure pupils passed their exams.
Thompson said there was still room for improvement, however. To achieve better results than the 81.3% pass achieved in KwaZulu-Natal, the Education Department should improve on aspects such as overcrowding of classrooms. Thompson said classrooms sometimes had as many as 100 pupils and this made it difficult for teachers to do their jobs properly. Another problem was that pupils with learning disabilities were not quickly identified by teachers due to the large numbers in the classroom.
Filling vacant positions was another issue and educating teachers on the fourth industrial revolution as advocated by the national government would help them better educate pupils.
“We believe we can close the gap between the public and Independent Examinations Board,” Thompson said. He pointed out that some teachers who taught at IEB schools came from the public sector and left because they did not get proper remuneration.
Thompson said Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga also needed to get more power so she could hold education MECs, who were currently accountable to premiers, accountable.