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Quality of education sacrificed for high pass rate

Here follow excerpts from the speech delivered by FF Plus MPL, Tammy Wessels, in the Free State Legislature earlier today during the budget vote debate of the Free State Department of Education.

The Free State Department of Education is not supporting and empowering learners to become productive members of the community that can make a positive contribution to society. They are setting learners up for failure by setting low standards and by planning to make the already-low matric pass mark even lower.

South Africa has one of the highest university drop-out rates in the world. We want to offer free tertiary education, but learners are not being empowered to cope with the requirements of university subjects.

The ANC government prefers to sacrifice proper standards in primary and secondary education for the sake of a cosmetic high pass rate.

In 2017, South Africa’s matric pass rate was 75.1% with a minimum pass mark of 30%. Had the minimum percentage needed to pass been 40%, a mere 54% of learners would have passed matric. This proves that the quality of education is seriously lacking and that a large percentage of learners only just made the minimum of 30%.

The government should invest in ensuring high quality education in the Free State instead of being satisfied with mediocrity for the sake of a high pass rate.

Teachers must be empowered. The absence of teachers is a big problem in the Free State and it needs to be addressed at once.

Additionally, education in the Free State must focus on entrepreneurship so as to promote self-empowerment and job creation.

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