The Independent Examinations Board (IEB) matrics of 2023 have maintained their 98% and above pass rate of 98.46% - slightly higher than the 98.42% achieved in 2022.
According to reports, every candidate who wrote the IEB exams received a pass, allowing them to enrol at one of three post-secondary education levels:
- 88.59% of the cohort were able to enrol in a degree programme.
- 8.31% were eligible to begin a diploma programme.
- 1.57% of applicants were accepted to study for a Higher Certificate.
The remarkable achievement of the Class of 2023 has seen educators praise learners who have worked hard and showed tenacity throughout the academic year.
There were 12 133 part-time and 13 967 full-time candidates, according to the IEB, and the exam session was run without any outliers that would have compromised the exams’ integrity.
IEB CEO Confidence Dikgole said that although there were setbacks and difficulties during the pupils' five-year journey, particularly those caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, overall this cohort was well-positioned for success.
According to Dikgole, students’ mental health was an important issue that required attention.
“What, however, is not often talked about, is the tremendous pressure brought to bear on learners by society. Schools’ experience with young people points to the escalating mental health issues, which is perhaps one of the greatest challenges our youngsters face and it does impact their ability to perform at their peak in a high stakes examination.”
She added that it was important for pupils to know that the world of education did not end after matric and that it was only the start of a myriad of doors and opportunities.
“There are many educational routes – not all of them necessarily need to lead to a university degree – that releases their talents and their enthusiasm to be the very best they can in a field that has captivated their interest. We need to remove this pass-rate obsessed lens of competition, so we – and they – can start to see the success of their achievement with different eyes,” said Dikgole.
Last year, Midstream College, in Midrand, was among the top performing schools with 11 pupils with an “outstanding achievement” status.
This year, St David’s Marist Inanda in Johannesburg cemented itself as one of the country’s leading high schools, with the matric class of 2023 recording a 100% pass rate and 274 distinctions in IEB exams – and an impressive 95% of candidates earning a Bachelor’s degree pass.
According to executive headmaster Mike Thiel, one of its top achievers was St David’s 2023 Dux Scholar, Aditya Kumar, who achieved an average of 95% across his eight subjects, and was named among the IEB’s Outstanding Achievers and in the top 1% of candidates in Further Studies Mathematics, Afrikaans, business studies, English, geography, life orientation, mathematics and physical sciences.
Thiel said another top achiever at the school was Jack Latilla-Campbell, who excelled with nine distinctions and was subsequently named an IEB Commendable Achiever, making a mark among the top 1% of candidates nationwide in mathematics and music.
Furthermore, the school saw six boys achieving eight distinctions while eight more clocked up seven distinctions – with 64% of the class obtaining at least one distinction.
“I am delighted that our Marist philosophy of educating both head and heart is so well represented in the exceptional academic results and the character of each and every 2023 matriculant at St David’s Marist Inanda. These are young men with all the tools to find new solutions and lead our world.
“Their results are a testament to their commitment to excellence, not only in their academics but in all aspects of school life – in sporting, cultural, leadership and service endeavours. They have had a remarkable year in which they led the school with pride and passion, and they leave a wonderful legacy,” Thiel said.
St Mary School in Waverley also announced that its learners achieved outstanding results after its Class of 2023 recorded 88 girls who achieved a 100% pass rate with 81 candidates obtaining an average of 60% or higher. For English, the entire class obtained a C average or higher, with 48 girls achieving a distinction, nine of whom are in the top 1% of the subject.
“St Mary’s School is delighted to extend heartfelt congratulations to the exceptional class of 2023 for their outstanding matriculation results. This remarkable achievement is a testament to their resilience, dedication and unwavering commitment to academic excellence,” the school for the girls said.
Southdowns College in Centurion is yet another IEB school that achieved a remarkable 100% pass rate.
“Another year has concluded, marked by a resounding triumph at Southdowns College. The institution has achieved a flawless pass rate, setting a new record for BD pass rates, with nearly half of the students attaining top aggregates. The matrics of 2023 have exhibited unwavering dedication and tireless efforts, and their accomplishments shine brightly,” said Suzan Thupane.
Reddam House Gauteng also celebrated achieving an outstanding 98% Bachelor pass rate, a 100% overall pass rate, and an impressive 491 distinctions across Reddam House Waterfall, Reddam House Bedfordview, and Reddam House Helderfontein.
SAHETI is one of the schools that has maintained an outstanding academic record and achieved a 100% degree pass rate.
The executive head of the school, Morag Rees, was thrilled with the outcome of the results and congratulated the 2023 matric group and their exceptional teachers.
“SAHETI’s ability to consistently deliver superb matric results year after year is thanks to our super-supportive school community. Our board, educators, parents, and alumni are all so committed to providing a unique environment, where the development of happy successful children is paramount, from playschool through to Grade 12. I am thrilled for our 2023 matric group and their expert teachers - well done and well deserved,“ said Rees.
Nikhil Pillay is SAHETI’s top candidate, achieving the highest average (93%) and full house 10 distinctions of which eight were 90% and higher: Accounting, Afrikaans, English, life orientation, life sciences, mathematics, Modern Greek, physical sciences, Further Studies English, and Further Studies Mathematics (Extended).
He has been named an Outstanding Achiever by the IEB, ranking him within the top 5% of candidates nationally in six or more subjects.