News / South Africa

Steven Tau
5 minute read
4 Jan 2017
4:55 pm

Matric pass rate comes in at 72.5%

Steven Tau

The Free State tops the class with 88.2% with progressed learners.

Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga shares some thoughts on the Gauteng province's 2015 matric results during the official announcement held at the Rhema Bible Church in Johannesburg, 06 January 2016. Picture: Refilwe Modise

Motshekga announced on Wednesday that the National Senior Certificate (NSC) class of 2016 had achieved a pass rate of 72.5% – up from the 70.7% in 2015.

The 2016 pass rate includes progressed learners – those who had failed Grade 11 twice and been pushed through to Grade 12. Without the large cache of progressed learners, the pass rate would have been 76.2%.

The Class of 2016 had 108,742 registered progressed learners, which was an increase from the 65,673 progressed learners in 2015.

“With progressed learners excluded, three provinces achieved at below 70%; five achieved above 80%; and one province achieved above 90%. The six provinces with above 80% must be commended,” Motshekga said.

“The 2016 NSC overall pass rate, with the progressed learners excluded, stands at 76.2%. However, with the progressed learners included, the 2016 NSC overall pass rate stands at 72.5%, which represents 442,672 candidates who have passed, the second largest in history. Well done to the Class of 2016!”

The Free State was the top performing province with 93.2%, an increase of 5.5% from the 87.7% in 2015. It was the only province to crack the 90% threshold.

“Congratulations MEC Tate Makgoe, this is a great feat, the first since the introduction of the National Senior Certificate examinations nine years ago,” Motshekga said.

“Breaking this threshold is no child’s play in the public sector with all the challenges of public education, having to deal with learners from poor to wealthy households, children from rural and urban settings, learners facing a variety of learning barriers, big learner numbers and just dealing with South Africa in its different manifestations.”

The total number of learners who registered for the 2016 NSC examinations, was 828,020, of which 674,652 were full-time candidates and 153,368 part-time candidates. A total of 610,178 full-time and 107,793 part-time learners wrote the 2016 NSC examinations.

“The Class of 2016 has recorded the highest enrolment of Grade 12 learners in the history of the basic education system in SA,” Motshekga said.

The Western Cape was the second best performing province with 87.7%, a decline of 0.3% from 88% achieved in 2015. Gauteng came third with 87%, an increase of 1.1% from 85.9% in 2015.

Motshekga read out the results of all the province’s in ascending order.

— Eastern Cape attained 63.3%, an increase of 1.1% from 62.2% in 2015
— Limpopo attained 68.2%, a decline of 3.5% from 71.7% in 2015
— KwaZulu-Natal attained 69.5%, an increase of 7.9% from 61.6% in 2015
— Mpumalanga attained 81.3%, a decline of 0.8% from 82.1% in 2015
— Northern Cape attained 82.2%, a decline of 1.8% from 84% in 2015
— North West attained 86.2%, an increase of 9% from 77.2% in 2015

NSC student from around the country will know their fate at midnight.

– African News Agency (ANA)




From SABC News digital 

Number of promoted learners rises

The number of learners promoted to Grade 12 rose from 65,000 in 2015 to 108,000 in 2016, the department of basic education said on Wednesday.

Chief director Rufus Poliah presented the technical report on the 2016 results in Johannesburg, ahead of Minister Angie Motshekga’s official announcement of the national pass rate and overall results.

“In 2015, we introduced a policy on progression, which basically said if a learner fails a grade twice there is no value in retaining that learner in that grade…that learner should be progressed to the next grade… but the important proviso is that that learner should be supported all the way,” said Poliah.

He said promotion of learners even if they did not meet requirements for the next grade was an international practice.

“It happens in a number of countries, but we are lacking behind in that we have not put in place the needed support the learner when moved to the next grade. It is important to note that when a learner is progressed, he has to finally satisfy the requirement of Grade 12 in order to be awarded the NSC (national senior certificate).”

Promoting learners was not a ‘pass one, pass all’ policy he said. The method was used to avoid having ‘frustrated learners’ who eventually drop out of the school system.

At least 828,020 entered the 2016 Grade 12 class — 674,652 of them were full time candidates, while 153,368 were part time candidates.

Of the 674,652 candidates who entered the class of 2016, 610,178 of them registered to sit for the exams. However, a total of 64,474 of them were absent at the end or did not write, said Poliah.

“This includes learners absent due to ill health or a number of factors which would have prevented them from writing the exam, or learners who decided to go with the multiple examination system [for promoted learners who are unable to write all exam papers at one go].”

Learners who chose the multiple exam and wrote at least four subjects, would write the rest of their subjects in June this year, said Poliah.

– African News Agency (ANA)


A technical briefing ahead of the official announcement of the 2016 matric results on Wednesday afternoon revealed that the country’s education system may now be moving in the right direction.

This as research indicates that South Africa has shown its largest improvement in results since 2003, particularly for the subjects of maths and science.

ALSO READ: How to check your 2016 matric results

The class of 2016 entered the formal schooling system in January 2005, just after an important curriculum revision was implemented. The total number of candidates who sat for the 2016 exams was 828 020.

There were 674 652 full-time candidates and 153 368 were part-time candidates. Full-time enrolments grew from 667 925 in 2015 to 674 652 last year. The total number of candidates who wrote the exams was 610 178 and those who were absent amounted to 64 474.

Picture: Steven Tau

Picture: Steven Tau

Quintile 5 schools achieved the highest number of bachelor passes from the 2016 matric exams.

The Quintile 5 scale comprises better-resourced schools in the country. Achieved bachelor passes were 51 389 while 23 016 passes were recorded in Quintile 1 schools, which is made up of poorly resourced schools.

The technical briefing also revealed that 32 schools attained 100% over the past five years consistently in Gauteng. There were 19 in KwaZulu Natal while Mpumalanga had seven.

The number of Quintile 1 schools that attained 100% were 48, with 173 in Quintile 5 schools. At least 500 Quintile 1 schools attained between 80% and 100%. In terms of subject performance, mathematics improved by 2% from last year’s 49.1% to 51.1%.

The total number of districts that achieved 80% and above nationally were 32 in total, compared with the 29 in 2015.