WCED exploring possible changes on how they pass or fail learners

Western Cape Education MEC Debbie Schafer says they are looking at a possible change of the national progression policy in the Western Cape.

She says if a child has not attained the required level by the end of Grade 3, they really can't progress in confidence within the school system.

The progression policy was designed to allow learners to progress to the next phase, but there were supposes to be measures in place to make sure these learners attain necessary skills to do so.

The national progression policy determines that if, for example, a learner has already repeated Grade 10 or 11, and then failed one of these two grades again, they have to advance to the next one. They can only be kept back once.

These kids know they can't be failed. We've had somebody sit in class, write their name and date on the paper and just sit for the rest of the test, because they know it doesn't matter what they write, they'll go through anyway.

Debbie Schäfer, Western Cape Education MEC

Schafer says the issue of progression is complex, as it creates complications one way or the other.

She says if you push the learners trough to the next level without the required skills, they end up dropping out. And on the other hand the department also doesn't want to deal with over crowded classrooms and over aged learners.

The department is currently going through the consultation process and public comments on the proposed Bill until the 23 September. It was made available on Friday in the Government Gazette, and Schafer urges anyone with knowledge on these matters to make a contribution.

Listen to the full conversation below:


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