News clipping – News24.com – 24 October 2010
Do or die for Class of 2010
There will be no lowering of standards for this year’s matric exams, despite the challenges stacked against matriculants.
Dr Nkosinathi Sishi, chief of the exams unit for the department of basic education, said last week that the high standard of South African exams would be maintained.
Education experts are divided about the outlook for the Class of 2010, which numbers 562 473.
Although provincial education departments came up with the recovery programmes to alleviate the loss of contact time between teachers and learners, educational specialist Graeme Bloch said he expected results would be worse than in previous years.
He explained that it had been a destabilizing, “horrible” year for education, especially for matrics.
Bloch urged matriculants to put their heads down, revise and study, using their textbooks.
However, Professor Francis Faller, acting head of the Witwatersrand University School of Education, cautioned against negative predications.
Faller explained: “The final exam needs to be seen as the culmination of 12 years of schooling, rather than what happens in the last semester. If teaching and learning have been inadequate during other stages of their schooling, it is difficult to believe that the last lap can fully compensate.”
He added: “It is also important to ask to what extent schooling is preparing our learners for self-dependence in learning, as opposed to complete dependence on teacher input right through to the very end of the school journey.”
Faller believed that the effect of interruptions might be “more psychological and emotional than academic”, since learners might feel that they were abandoned during these times.
Higher Education South Africa (HESA) CEO Professor Duma Malaza said without purporting to predict the final results of Grade 12 learners HESA was concerned about the loss of time this year.
By City Press