The Department of Basic Education is finalizing preparations for the administration of the 2017 Grade 12 National Senior Certificate examinations.
The Director-General, Mr Mathanzima Mweli, led a team from the DBE today to brief the Portfolio Committee on Basic Education on the state of readiness for the final matric examinations. He said that the Department was confident it would once again run credible and efficient examinations given its complex and involved nature.
Mr Mweli told Members of Parliament that the Department was hard at work to ensure that the examinations were of the appropriate standard, error-free and with no irregularities.
Mr Mweli also presented a detailed intervention plan to support Vuwani schools in the wake of the shutdown in the Limpopo town. The plan covers all 26 Secondary and 52 Primary Schools involving 29,066 learners, including 1,657 Grade 12 learners.
Registration of NSC Examinations Centres and candidates have been completed and final verification of the data is currently underway. Question papers have been set and externally moderated.
There are 636,814 registered full-time and 161,475 part-time candidates in the 2017 examinations, 37,000 less than 2016 in terms of full-time enrollment.
KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng have the largest enrollments again with 169,023 and 112,164 respectively. Limpopo has 110,639 while Eastern Cape registered 92,755 candidates for the 2017 exams.
To avert the leakage of 2017 question papers, all 212 storage points across the country have been audited to ensure compliance with the minimum security standards. Storage points that do not comply will not be allowed to store question papers.
The Director for Examinations, Ms Priscilla Ogunbanjo, told the Portfolio Committee that the education sector had adopted a principle of "just-in-time" printing to reduce the risk of storing printed question papers for too long in provinces.
The Chief Director for Curriculum Implementation, Mr Suren Govender, said that the Department did not only focus on system readiness but that it was also implementing programmes to ensure that learners received support.
He said that the Department had put in place measures to complement normal teaching and learning programmes to bring about improvements in performance since 2014. These include: language support, subject specific content support, tracking learner performance and support for progressed learners.
Mr Govender said that the Director-General had visited all Provinces and met with School Principals and education officials to impress upon them the importance of supporting learners and the efficient use of teaching time.
Final state of readiness visits to all Provincial Education Departments will commence on 18 September 2017 and conclude on 6 October 2017.
The examinations will commence on 24 October 2017 and conclude on 29 November 2017. The Minister of Basic Education will announce the outcome of the 2017 NSC Examinations on 4 January 2018. Candidates will collect their statements of results on 5 January 2018 at the centre where they wrote their examinations.
Enquiries: Elijah Mhlanga - 083 580 8275
ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF BASIC EDUCATION