Free State stays fo­cused

TOP PROV­INCE: RECORD-BREAK­ING MA­TRIC PASS RATE OF 88.4%

The Citizen (KZN) - - News - Katleho Mo­rapela and Marvin Nt­sane

There is still lots of room for im­prove­ment, in­sists ed­u­ca­tion MEC Tate Mak­goe.

The Free State ed­u­ca­tion depart­ment is de­ter­mined not to rest on its lau­rels, de­spite the prov­ince tak­ing top hon­ours na­tion­ally in the 2019 ma­tric ex­am­i­na­tions.

Im­prov­ing the state of ed­u­ca­tion in the foun­da­tion phase, up­skilling teach­ers in the Free State and in­creas­ing the num­ber of those who can teach tech­ni­cal math­e­mat­ics are among the pri­or­i­ties for the Free State depart­ment of ed­u­ca­tion.

Ad­dress­ing hun­dreds of par­ents, pupils and teach­ers gath­ered at the Cen­tral Uni­ver­sity of Tech­nol­ogy (CUT) for the an­nounce­ment of the pro­vin­cial ma­tric re­sults, ed­u­ca­tion MEC Tate Mak­goe said more needed to be done to im­prove the qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion in the prov­ince.

This de­spite the prov­ince hav­ing re­claimed first po­si­tion coun­try­wide and set­ting a record-break­ing pass rate of 88.4%.

Mak­goe has as­sured the pub­lic that im­prov­ing the state of ed­u­ca­tion and pro­duc­ing top-per­form­ing pupils re­mained his ul­ti­mate goal.

He ap­pealed to the CUT vice-chan­cel­lor, Pro­fes­sor Henk de Jager, to join hands in im­prov­ing the state of ed­u­ca­tion by in­creas­ing the uni­ver­sity’s in­take of stu­dents keen to en­ter the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor, par­tic­u­larly those strong in maths and sci­ence.

In ad­di­tion to Mak­goe’s com­mit­ment to im­prov­ing the state of ed­u­ca­tion in the prov­ince, De Jager said CUT has a sim­i­lar vi­sion and long, good-stand­ing re­la­tions with the pro­vin­cial depart­ment, which they would cer­tainly en­hance.

De Jager said CUT had se­cured schol­ar­ships for 10 of the 100 top- per­form­ing ma­tric­u­lants, who wanted to pur­sue sci­ence and en­gi­neer­ing de­grees at the uni­ver­sity.

Mean­while, the depart­ment of so­cial de­vel­op­ment has en­cour­aged stu­dents who did not per­form well in their ma­tric ex­ams to try again.

Spokesper­son Lumka Oliphant said there was a ma­tric sup­port pro­gramme avail­able for sec­ond-chance pupils pro­vided by the depart­ment of ba­sic ed­u­ca­tion. The pro­gramme would as­sist stu­dents who wish to get a sec­ond op­por­tu­nity to sit the ex­ams. Pupils can reg­is­ter at their schools and dis­trict of­fices.

Oliphant urged pupils to re­frain from suc­cumb­ing to al­co­hol or sub­stance abuse in an at­tempt to numb the pain of poor re­sults and said the depart­ment had opened a com­mand cen­tre to pro­vide coun­selling.

They can con­tact the cen­tre on 0800-428 428 or by di­alling *120*7867# – free on all net­works. – OFM News

Pic­ture Neil McCartney

SHIN­ING STAR. Gaut­eng Premier David Makhura and Min­is­ter of Ed­u­ca­tion Angie Mot­shekga present Me­gan Ol­ck­ers with a cer­tifi­cate for be­ing the best-per­form­ing pupil in Gaut­eng at an event at the Mo­saik Teatro in Fair­lands yes­ter­day.

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