Pretoria: Cabinet has extended its well wishes to the class of 2012 as the first batch of the country’s “born frees” commenced the final 2012 National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations this morning.
The exams began today with English Paper 1 and will end on 28 November. The 2012 cohort of Grade 12s were born in 1994, the year that ushered democracy into South Africa. The spotlight is on these learners to see how they carry the legacy of Nelson Mandela.
Acting Cabinet Spokesperson, Phumla Williams, said it was this time of the year that pupils needed the full support of society as they get tested to become future leaders and role-players in communities.
“We urge the parents, guardians and the entire society to support and encourage the candidates as they complete their 12 years of learning and teaching. As they write their examinations with the aim of an improved pass rate, we are confident these pupils have the potential to produce the best results,” said Williams.
President Jacob Zuma and Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga, have expressed confidence in the matriculants and wished them well.
The Gauteng Education Department, where 91 512 fulltime and 36 837 part-time learners have registered, said while it cannot predict the performance of learners, they remain optimistic that they have given learners the best possible chance they could to pass.
Since February, the department has run extra classes in priority schools targeting nearly 50 000 learners, who attended the Secondary School Improvement Programme (SSIP) every Saturday and during school holidays.
SSIP subjects are Maths, Maths Literacy, Physical Science, Life Science, Accountancy, English First Additional Language, History, Geography, Business Studies and Economics. In October, the department held 118 walk-in final matric revision camps as well as 34 residential camps aimed to help learners with final revision, exam technique and time management.
“We are hopeful that these efforts, including learner dedication and motivation, will bear fruit,” said the provincial department spokesperson, Charles Phahlane.
Also wishing the matric class of 2012 all the best, the South African Democratic Teachers’ Union reminded the learners that the matric certificate is the most crucial certificate in ones’ schooling life.
“This certificate, just like education, increases one’s chances of eradicating poverty, it is therefore crucial not only to the learners but to their families and the nation as well. As the current Matric class will be the fifth to write the NCS, we hope the teachers have gained enough experience which will see an improvement of the results in quantity in general and quality in particular,” said SADTU General Secretary, Mugwena Maluleke.
Maluleke said the union has confidence in teachers and learners for the dedication and commitment observed in the spring classes in preparation for the final examinations. He further advised them to stay focused and calm throughout the examination period.