Basic Education hits back at DA’s ‘narrow-minded analysis’ of matric pass rate

Basic Education hits back at DA’s ‘narrow-minded analysis’ of matric pass rate

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has called for the Department of Basic Education to address the shortcomings it believes may hold back the matric class of 2021. 

Matric Exams 2020
Steve Bhengu

This comes after minister Angie Mosthekga released the 2020 matric results on Monday afternoon. 

The pass rate came down by 5.1% compared to the previous year. 

The DA’s Baxolile Nodada claims that there has been a 38.4% increase of schools with a 0% pass rate, from 13 in 2019 to 18 in 2020. 

Nodada says the department's shortcomings point to a bigger issue in the system.  

“While the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic may have played a role in this increase, the reality is that it is also indicative of the deep systemic failures of the Department of Basic Education. 

“Maybe the department can take a leaf from the Western Cape where they will find not a single school with a 0% pass rate and where the percentage of learners that have passed Mathematics with an average of 40% or above, sits at 54.4% - almost 10% higher than Gauteng who is second at 45.9% and Physical Sciences at 57.5%, again the highest in the country,” Nodada adds.  

He fears that if these systemic issues continue unabated, the future generation of pupils will be in trouble.  

“Many schools are falling apart and unsafe. They don’t have the basic infrastructure, like water and sanitation, in place, never mind the ability to cater to all the challenges the Covid-19 pandemic brought. 

“This school year has already started late because the department failed to use the time at hand to ensure schools were ready to re-open safely. That means that the 2021 matrics, especially those that are already facing an uphill battle due to systemic challenges, will have to work even harder to pass this year.” 


But Basic Education spokesperson Elijah Mhlanga has hit back at the claims.  

“The narrow-minded of the DA’s analysis is disappointing. The same Western Cape they speak faces a myriad of challenges that are similar to those taking place elsewhere in the country. Disappointing is the fact this organisation runs a system in the Western Cape where protests also happen due to non-delivery of basic education services,” says Mhlanga. 

“If really Western Cape was perfect, they would achieve 100% in every respect and then lead the entire country in performance. It is disingenuous, misleading and unwise to politicise education in the manner the DA has sought to do.” 

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