Par­ties dis­ap­pointed at ma­tric pass rate

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THE ANC in the North­ern Cape has ex­pressed its ex­treme dis­ap­point­ment in the drop in the 2018 ma­tric re­sults, adding that the party will meet the lead­er­ship of the ed­u­ca­tion depart­ment in an ef­fort to an­a­lyse the re­sults and agree on a way for­ward.

The pro­vin­cial sec­re­tary of the ANC, Dehsi Ngxanga, said yes­ter­day that it was par­tic­u­larly con­cern­ing for the ANC that there seemed to be no im­prove­ment in the ma­tric re­sults, both quan­ti­ta­tively and qual­i­ta­tively.

“Ed­u­ca­tion re­mains a so­ci­etal is­sue and the re­spon­si­bil­ity of each and ev­ery stake­holder, and we would there­fore like to urge par­ents and so­ci­ety to play a more ac­tive role in the ed­u­ca­tion of our chil­dren,” Ngxanga added.

“The ma­tric re­sults are an in­di­ca­tion that more needs to be done and we need to look at in­ter­ven­tions aimed at con­stantly im­prov­ing our ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem.”

The party con­grat­u­lated the pupils and the dif­fer­ent stake­hold­ers in the John Taolo Gaet­sewe Re­gion for the com­mit­ment and hard work which saw the dis­trict move from fifth place to sec­ond in the Prov­ince.

The party also ap­plauded the Prov­ince’s teach­ers for their ded­i­ca­tion through­out the year.

“To those ma­tric­u­lants who did not make it, we urge you not to give up, rereg­is­ter and write your ma­tric. Ed­u­ca­tion is, af­ter all, the only weapon that can change the world.”

The Congress of the Peo­ple (Cope) added its dis­ap­pointed yes­ter­day also at “the poor out­comes of the 2018 ma­tric re­sults for the North­ern Cape”.

Cope MPL in the North­ern Cape, Pakes Dikgetsi, said three crit­i­cal fac­tors had led to “this un­ac­cept­able out­come”.

“The first is last year’s con­tin­u­ous shut­down ac­tions, which dis­rupted ed­u­ca­tion and had a longer term neg­a­tive im­pact on the morale in the ed­u­ca­tion en­vi­ron­ment. The de­cline is clearly vis­i­ble and felt in the Frances Baard Dis­trict, which is where the po­lit­i­cal un­rest was con­cen­trated. Once again, as it hap­pened dur­ing po­lit­i­cal un­rest in Ku­ru­man few years ago, nar­row and self-serv­ing po­lit­i­cal bat­tles have had a dis­as­trous im­pact on the ed­u­ca­tion of our chil­dren. Those at the helm of gov­ern­ment lead­er­ship do not learn or sim­ply don’t care.”

Dikgetsi said the ANC needed to take full re­spon­si­bil­ity for the de­cline in the pass rate. “It is their in­ter­nal fac­tional fights that caused the chaos and de­struc­tion. They ma­nip­u­lated in­no­cent peo­ple to burn and break down not just pub­lic and pri­vate prop­erty but also dis­ci­pline and law and or­der.

Scape­goats

“They must not look for scape­goats any­where but look at their own glar­ing po­lit­i­cal lead­er­ship fail­ures. They caused the de­fo­cus and di­ver­sion de­spite Cope warn­ing about the neg­a­tive im­pact on the gen­eral com­mu­nity.”

Dikgetsi said the sec­ond fac­tor was the dis­rup­tive con­duct of the South African Demo­cratic Teach­ers Union. “Where they are the dom­i­nant union there is gen­eral un­pro­fes­sional be­hav­ior and a lack of an un­com­pro­mis­ing spirit in the in­ter­est of the child.

“Town­ship schools, where Sadtu rules, are in a sorry state and it is where the in­ter­ests of the chil­dren are sac­ri­ficed at the al­tar of po­lit­i­cal ex­pe­di­ency.”

He added that it was well known that Sadtu op­posed the in­tro­duc­tion of a per­for­mance ap­praisals pol­icy for teach­ers.

The third fac­tor, ac­cord­ing to Dikgetsi, was the bud­get al­lo­ca­tion to the North­ern Cape Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion. “The bud­get is not ad­e­quate and the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment must review the al­lo­ca­tion so that ed­u­ca­tion re­ceives a fair al­lo­ca­tion.

For years the depart­ment has been plead­ing with the NC Leg­is­la­ture Port­fo­lio Com­mit­tee on Ed­u­ca­tion for as­sis­tance in ob­tain­ing suf­fi­cient re­sources that are in line with an in­crease in the num­ber of learn­ers in schools but this has fallen on deaf ears and met with an in­tran­si­gent ‘don’t care at­ti­tude’. The depart­ment has been warn­ing that this sit­u­a­tion may have neg­a­tive con­se­quences in the ed­u­ca­tion out­comes and now the chick­ens are com­ing home to roost.”

The party called for ur­gent ac­tion to be taken to ad­dress these and many more chal­lenges in the ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem.

“The be­trayal of the fu­ture of our chil­dren must be stopped. Ed­u­ca­tion should not be politi­cised as is cur­rently hap­pen­ing.”

The Demo­cratic Al­liance in the North­ern Cape said that while they cel­e­brated the achieve­ments of in­di­vid­ual pupils, es­pe­cially those from pre­vi­ously dis­ad­van­taged back­grounds, the party was con­cerned about those who were failed by the North­ern Cape Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion.

“In 2016, a to­tal of 23 082 learn­ers were en­rolled in grade 10 in the Prov­ince. Only 9 909 wrote the ex­ams last year, which means that only 42.9% of the pupils en­rolled in grade 10 ac­tu­ally went on to write their ex­ams. And, of this small group, only 31.5% passed,” DA leader in the North­ern Cape, An­drew Louw, said.

He pointed out that this meant that only one of ev­ery three pupils en­rolled in grade 10 in 2016 went on to pass their ex­ams last year.

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