The Democratic Alliance (DA) has extended well wishes to matriculants for their final examinations that will begin on Monday.

The party also says that it is pleased that exams have kicked off smoothly during this season.

Parents have been urged to offer learners support during this time.

Matriculants will be writing English Paper 1 on Tuesday.

“We’d like to ask all the parents as well to support the learners and all the teachers and the principals. We want to say ‘Thank you’ for what they are doing and if they could continue doing that to ensure that we get good results so that our learners can be able to get the opportunities to go to university and those who want to work, that they will find work,” says DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Basic Education Nomsa Marchesi.

Meanwhile, the Portfolio Committee on Education has challenged matriculants in Gauteng to achieve a 90% pass rate in 2018. In 2017, the province was ranked second with an 86% pass rate after the Free State at 89.8%.

The committee has wished matriculants well as they start their final year exams in earnest this week. It has also called on the Education Department to beef up security at all exam centres.

Committee Chairperson Joe Mpisi has advised learners to abandon their cellphones until the end of the exams.

“We must also ask them to cut on the social needs, if needs be. They could give their parents their cell phones and make sure that the thing that they fall in love with now must be their books. Secondly, we are asking their parents to give support to these young people because they need all of us. The churches must pray for them. Lastly, we are asking society not to pressurise these matriculants. We know Gauteng our target is 90%.”