The Western Cape Education Department continues to struggle with the placement of some 4000 learners in schools. Briefing the Standing Committee on Education, the Western Cape Education Department cited gangsterism in some areas, migration of learners, and late applications as the reasons behind the long-standing annual challenge.
Over 1 million learners have registered for this year’s academic year in the Western Cape. In July 2021, the province had a backlog of over 30 000 unplaced learners. An admission team was established to focus on placements during the fourth quarter.
The number has since been reduced to over 4000, but the department says the placement issue remains complex.
The Department’s District Chief Director, Alan Meyer says: “We struggle with placement because people move around. Also, there are empty classes in places such as Bonteheuwel but parents say they don’t want to place their children there because of gangsterism issue.”
The number of candidates who wrote full examinations increased from over 48 000 in 2017 to over 57 000 in 2021. The Western Cape retained its spot in the top three for the matric pass rate. The department told the standing committee it is pleased with the improvement in the pass rate by 1.3% to an overall pass of 81.2% and the admission to bachelor’s degrees.
Chief Director, Assessments and Examinations, Bertram Loriston explains:
“Given the turbulent year of 2020 and 2021, the Western Cape Education Department told the standing committee it is pleased with the improved pass rate and access to bachelor’s degrees.”
The department also told the committee that disruptions caused by COVID-19 such as the closure of schools for decontamination led to a decline in the results for the West Coast and Cape Winelands.
The department says it has developed a plan to enhance the system’s performance which includes profiling the class of 2021, detailed analysis of the National Senior Certificate, Grades 10 and 11 results, as well as encouraging self-learning among others.
Back to School | Nearly 3 000 learners yet to be placed in Western Cape schools: