KwaZulu-Natal teen ready to give matric a second shot

By Harvest Thwala Time of article published Nov 10, 2021

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After a tumultuous year in matric due to the Covid-19 pandemic, KwaZulu-Natal teen Thato Nxumalo said she is ready to give the National Senior Certificate exams another try.

The pandemic had a severe impact on last year’s group of matric pupils. Grade 12 learners lost three months of classroom learning and teaching because of the hard lockdown first imposed on March 27 and only ending in July last year. This disruption in teaching led to a number of Grade 12 pupils not performing well in their final exams.

Nxumalo said she was more confident this year. She said she was determined and well-prepared for her final exams.

“Last was tough and it taught me the new normal of living under Covid restrictions. With the lessons learnt from last year, this year at least I knew what was expected of me and that helped me with better planning and preparations,” said Nxumalo.

The 20-year-old believes she’s going to do better and is aiming for at least 50%.

Nxumalo admits that she lost focus when schools were closed for so long and then partially opened.

“Covid had a lot of impact since we had to go to school either 3 days or 2 days a week. Last year we had to try to adjust and to adapt to the new environment of social distancing, protecting ourselves, and not going to school every day. Everything was new and it took a toll mentally; the statistics and death rates in the news were shocking.”

According to Nxumalo, the lack of online learning facilities in township schools affected pupils’ results.

“Not having access to online learning created communication barriers between us and teachers. They tried WhatsApp groups but it was not successful due to the cost of data,” she said.

Nxumalo hopes to get a place at university.

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