Limpopo’s improved pass rate gets mixed reception

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There have been mixed reactions to the 5% pass rate improvement of Limpopo’s Matric Class of 2022. Some political parties have welcomed the increase, while others believe the provincial government could have done more to support learners. Limpopo still ranks last in comparison to other provinces, but has recorded the second highest margin of improvement.

For the first time since 2019, Limpopo’s matric class has achieved a 70% pass rate. The province’s matric results declined in 2020 and 2021.  It has also been trailing between position seven and nine when compared to other provinces for over five years.

Parties in the province 

Freedom Front Plus Limpopo leader Marcelle Maritz has welcomed the results.

“We have got really good learners in Limpopo. It’s very important to show that a province that is mostly rural is growing like this; this is quite a happy place for us today to be part of this celebration with the youth for the future,” said Maritz.

Provincial secretary of the African National Congress, Reuben Madadzhe, commended his colleagues on their efforts.

“We are very, very happy and we are impressed by the work of our deployees in government especially the MEC responsible for education in the province. We just need to tighten some loose screws so that we can continue improving our results,” he commented.

However, the province’s official opposition party, the Economic Freedom Fighters and the Democratic Alliance, believe the provincial government could have done more to provide a conducive learning environment.

The EFF’s Cedric Seshoka criticised government for the challenges faced by the matriculants.

“We’d like to appreciate the learners and the educators because they have been resilient under very difficult conditions. The EFF believes that government could have done more than they have done. Our children have to learn under difficult conditions – there were children that wrote their matric under a tree, there are children that went to school without any ablution facilities,” Seshoka remarked.

Deputy Federal Chairperson of the Democratic Alliance in Limpopo Jacques Smalle also remarked on the challenges faced by his province’s matrics.

“Definitely, we need to support the Class of 2022, a difficult two years for them but then there are areas of concern. We need to understand that more than 28% of our learners in this class actually dropped out, that is 43 000 learners,” he said.

Premier commits to fixing infrastructure challenges

Limpopo Premier Stanley Mathabatha has committed to resolving infrastructure challenges at schools before the end of his term of office. Mathabatha also criticised communities that disrupt schooling.

“Issues of classrooms, restrooms, stationery, and provision of teaching staff should be solely on the shoulders of government not learners or parents. Secondly, I wish to appeal to communities to stop disrupting learning and teaching in the name of service delivery protests. While we acknowledge that the concerns which are being raised are genuine, we are, however, saying that education and school are not and will never be the correct platforms of raising those concerns,” the Premier stressed.

Mathabatha says the province is now aiming for a 80% pass rate.