Feelings of anxiety, restlessness and nervousness were etched on the faces of matriculants at New Eisleben High School in Crossroads and Siphamandla High School in Khayelitsha as they stood in queues to collect their National Senior Certificate (NSC) exam results on Friday January 4.
But the nail-biting gave way to screams of excitement and jubilation as some pupils could not contain their emotions.
The pupils completed their final Grade 12 exams in November last year and had to wait for more than a month to know their fate before they could kick-start their plans for the future.
However, the long wait finally came to an end last week.
Friday when the results were issued out. National Minister of Basic Education, Angie Motsekga, announced a slight improvement as the pass rate for 2018 was 78.2% compared to 75.1% in 2017. The Western Cape came third behind Gauteng and the Free State, with a pass rate of 81.5%, a decline from 84.4% in 2017.
Acting school principal at New Eisleben High School, Lubanzi Tyandela, said the school had improved drastically from the previous year’s results, with 16 percent points. He added that the school achieved an overalla pass rate of 67.7%, up by 15.3%.
Mr Tyandela said out of 269 pupils who wrote the exams, 53 got a Bachelor’s pass enabling them to apply to study at a university, while 67 managed to get a Diploma pass and 62 received a higher certificate pass.
He said in 2016 the school managed to achieve 68.1% and the results in previous years were hovering just over 40%. But, he said, in 2017 the results took a bad turn and the school recorded a pas rate of 52.4%.
He attributed 2017’s poor results to internal fights and squabbles that disrupted the school’s planning and progress.
However, he said last year the school developed a plan and implemented various strategies to ensure that they improve their results.
While the second school term did not start according to plan, again due to internal battles, This, he said, that did at some point disturb the pupils concentration and the school programme and planning. But he said they had resolved such matters and had set a target of 75% to 85% pass rate.
“We are glad that the school is improving the results. But we are not where we want to be. We want this school to be among the best schools. And we believe we can do that. I also praise the endless efforts of teachers. We are going to put the school on the map. We want to make history, “ said Mr Tyandela.
Asked about challenges, he said the challenge was that these pupils who struggled were the ones who did not attend morning, afternoon and Saturday classes.
As a result, he said many of them had failed because those extra classes were designed to help them.
He said they were planning to apply the same strategies this year as they saw the benefits of it.
Thinathi Stemele from New Eisleben was the top pupil for New Eisleben High School as he achieved five distinctions code seven’s.
The 17-year-old was over the moon and could not contain his emotions.
He said he had sacrificed a lot to reach his goals, such as cutting out socialising and sport and opted to focus on his books.
He said he was the first in his family to attain such results and that makes him proud.
Acting principal of Siphamandla High School, Thembisa Mngcushe said the school attained a 89.3% pass rate.
She said the percentage had dropped slightly from 92% in 2017.
But she said the school target this year was to increase the pass rate and ensure that they attain 96% and, if possible, 100%.
She said the school has already developed strategies and plans to ensure that they attain their target.
She said that out of 140 pupils who wrote their exams, 56 received a Bachelor’s pass while 43 attained a Diploma pass and 26 managed to obtain a higher certificate pass.
Siphamandla High School matriculant Pheliswa Mbana was thrilled that she received a Bachelor’s pass.
The 19-year-old said she credits the hard work and patience of her teachers for her results. She urged the teachers to continue being dedicated to the pupils.
1 of 3