Matric class of 2020 did ’better than expected’ in a year of ’business unusual’
Cape Town - Despite the five percent drop in the National Senior Certificate examination results to 76.2%, the Matric Class of 2020 fared better than expected after a year marred by disruptions due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Parliament’s portfolio committee on Basic Education said on Monday.
Committee chairperson Bongiwe Mbinqo-Gigaba pointed out that the 2020 cohort managed to achieve more distinctions than their predecessors even though they spent most of last year in lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
“This was business unusual for our learners. They did better than expected. The 2020 academic year saw many disruptions with the closure of schools, which in turn saw many learners having to rely on distance learning whilst others had to try and catch up at later stages,” Mbinqo-Gigaba said.
“The committee notes the decline in the pass rate but feels that under the circumstances, this cohort of learners made us extremely proud. We would like to congratulate them, their parents, caregivers, educators and the education sector as a whole.”
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga earlier announced that the top performing provinces were the Free State with 85.1%, followed by Gauteng with 83.3%, Western Cape with 79.9% and KwaZulu-Natal with 77.6%.
“It is without doubt that the 2020 academic year, will be remembered as the year that, not only presented major health challenges, but a year when the entire world was engulfed by the by the Covid-19 pandemic,” Motshekga said during her announcement of the pass rates.
“Government, with its education departments and its strategic partners, worked very hard to strike a balance between saving lives and the 2020 academic year.”
The North West obtained a 76.2% pass rate, Mpumalanga 73.7%, Limpopo 68.2%, Eastern Cape 68.1% and the Northern Cape obtained 66%.
Of the 607 226 full time candidates who sat for the NSC exams, 36.4% achieved bachelor passes (slighly down from 36.9% the previous year), 26% achieved diploma passes, and 13.7% achieved higher certificate passes.