Matric 2021: Department of Basic Education ready to present credible final exams
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Johannesburg - With about two weeks left until the matric class of 2021 write their final exams, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga said the department is ready to present credible final exams.
The Department of Basic Education (DBE) hosted a media briefing on Friday to provide an update on the readiness for the 2021 National Senior Certificate exams, starting on October 27.
The 2021 matric exams will once again take place during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“This is the Grade 11 class of 2020, that did not complete their curriculum, but through the sheer hard work and dedication of our teachers, they have been able to cover the entire curriculum of 2021, and they even had enough time to do revisions,” the minister said.
Motshekga said there are 735 677 full-time candidates writing this year, an increase by 128 451.
“That means that the system needs to ensure that all health and safety protocols are adhered to. We have consulted with provinces to check on their state of readiness, and provinces have confirmed that it is all system go,” she said.
DBE’s director for Examination and Assessment Priscilla Ogunbanjo explained that all candidates, including those who tested positive for Covid-19 or display Covid-19 symptoms will be accommodated during the exams.
Ogunbanjo said there have been 41 596 exam markers across the country placed at 194 centres.
According to the DBE, matric learners have covered all angles of the curriculum and schools have put in extra support for Grade 12s. Most matric learners had one-and-a-half to two hours of extra learning a day.
“They had no holidays, no Saturdays and no morning breaks. They were working and learning at all times,” said Ogunbanjo.
The last day of matric exams is December 7 and marks capture is expected to be complete on December 27. Umalusi standardisation and evaluations will begin on January 6, 2022, and the minister will announce the results on January 20. The following day the provinces will release the class of 2021 matric results.
The minister urged all learners to take advantage of the learning and teaching support materials as well as the support through the Woza Matrics Campaign.
“The Woza Matrics Campaign is a supplementary remote learning support programme, that seeks to benefit our learners to catch-up on curriculum learning, Grade 11 and matric revision, as well as exam preparation,” Motshekga said.
Furthermore, the minister urged all South Africans to play a direct role in rebooting the basic education system.
“In rebooting the system, we must ensure that the basics are addressed. Our school communities must be at school on time, ready to teach and learn. Our schools must be safe havens for learning and teaching again.
“Learners in the foundation and senior phases must be able to read with meaning,” Motshekga said.
The minister added that in rebooting the system, there must be jointly found strategies to to decisively deal with most of the country’s perennial challenges. She said all of society, including community members, must commit to accelerate the rationalisation and closure of small and enviable schools.