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DSC 2756 K P NgoepeTop learners on stage during the Ministerial Announcement22 January 2014 - At the Ministerial Announcement of the 2013 National Senior Certificate examinations results on 6 January, the top learners of 2013 were present on stage and were individually congratulated by the Minister and Deputy Minister of Basic Education.

As part of the Mobile Education Programme the Vodacom Foundation has awarded the top learners from different quintiles with a package including a tablet, a BlackBerry and SIM cards and Internet connectivity. Also for learners pursuing careers in electrical engineering or information technology who are accepted at any of the national universities, the Vodacom Foundation has offered the possibility of a bursary.

The recipients of the Vodacom awards are:

Quintile 1: Kabelo Pheidah Ngoepe, Dendron Secondary School, Limpopo
Quintile 2: Ntsundeni Richiewell Ndou, Tshivhase Secondary School, Limpopo
Quintile 3: Praise Ndebele, Ponelopele Oracle Secondary School, Gauteng
Quintile 4: Lwazi S'Bongakonke Shezi, Velabahleke High School, KwaZulu-Natal
Quintile 5: Asil Motala, Westville Boys High School, KwaZulu-Natal

For pictures of these top learners and their awards please scroll down to the bottom of the article.

In a special message the Minister congratulated all learners of the Class of 2013, the second cohort of learners born in democratic South Africa. She assured the graduates that the government and other stakeholders are behind them, working hard on job creation and skills development so they can move into further studies or gain work experience. The full message can be found here.


Overall results

With an overall pass rate of 78,2%, an increase of 4.3% was achieved compared to 2012. Free State province scored highest with 87.4% followed by North West (87.2%), Gauteng (87%) and Western Cape (85.1%). The full report for the 2013 National Senior Certificate examination, which includes all possible statistics and breakdown of results, can be downloaded here (PDF, 4.48 MB).

During the New Age Bizbrief on 7 January the Minister stated that the matric results show that the system is on the right track and much has been achieved in opening the doors of learning to the African child. But it is still far from the perfect system that is envisaged for the country. It might take another 7 years before South Africa has a world standard educational system. She considers it too early for celebration when in districts in the Eastern Cape pass rates are below 60%.  Another concern is the high drop out rate of learners, which means that schools are failing the children. Retention will be a large focus area for the Department in 2014. Children need to be inspired to stay in school.

This year showed a minimal increase of the number learners writing mathematics and sciences. 40.5 % of the 241,509 learners who wrote maths scored 40% and higher, for physical science this is 42.7% of the 184,383 learners writing. The Minster conceded that the number of mathematics and science learners was too low and that in order to improve the results, learners need to be prepared better. Research shows that the deathtrap, the place were most learners give up on these subjects, is in senior phase. The attention to mathematics and physical sciences in grades 7, 8 and 9 will have to be ramped up.


Focus on teachers

Slide1Matric results for districts where Mobile Education centres are locatedMoving forward the Department will continue its focus on curriculum (2014 will be the last year of OBE), retention, cooperation with civil society, schools infrastructure, teachers, text and time. Minister Motshekga indicated a large focus on investing in teachers in every aspect. A large cohort of teachers will be retiring at the same time and training teachers is of the greatest concern. The DBE works closely with the Department of Higher Education and teacher training colleges have been re-opened. Also independent schools are involved with the in-service training of teachers.

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) plays an important role in improving teacher skills and enabling South African learners. The DBE cooperates with the various ICT companies including Vodacom. Of the 9 districts in which the Vodacom Mobile Education partnership has established ICT resource centres, 6 districts have matric pass rates above the national average. Special mention should be made of the Motheo district in the Free State and the R.S. Mophati district in North West, which saw an increase in matric pass rate of 11% and close to 8% respectively.

In the first quarter of 2014 some 30 teacher development centres all over the country will be expanded with Mobile Education ICT resource centre functionality, to assist the DBE in using ICT for teacher development. For an overview of the exisiting ICT Resource Centres and the centres under construction please click here


Related articles

  • Class of 2013 to receive results
  • 2014 Education sector outlook
  • Countdown to matric exams 2013
  • All systems go for 2014

 DSC 2783 K P Ngoepe SIZEKabelo Pheidah Ngoepe, Dendron Secondary School, Limpopo


DSC 2899 N R Ndou SIZENtsundeni Richiewell Ndou, Tshivhase Secondary School, Limpopo


DSC 2926 P Ndebele SIZEPraise Ndebele, Ponelopele Oracle Secondary School, Gauteng


 DSC 2957 L S Shezi SIZELwazi S’Bongakonke Shezi, Velabahleke High School, KwaZulu-Natal


DSC 2983 A Motala SIZEAsil Motala, Westville Boys High School, KwaZulu-Natal