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Saftu slams celebration of ‘mediocre’ matric pass rate

Saftu’s provincial secretary Moses A Mautsoe says the union will not celebrate the achievements of matric until the government takes education seriously.

FILE: A New Eisleben pupils celebrate after passing their 2017 Matric exams. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The South African Federation of Trade Unions (SAFTU) in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) says all the praise around the improvement in the matric results is a celebration of mediocrity.

The union says this is because the country’s education system, both in content and quality, is non-existent, lacks skills development and relevance and adds no value to the country’s economy.

The matric pass rate improved by 3.1% to 78.2%, however, the union argues that this is misleading as it does not consider the number of learners who have dropped out of school after registering for grade one.

Saftu’s provincial secretary Moses A Mautsoe says the union will not celebrate the achievements of matric until the government takes education seriously: “There must be something done by the state first, showing a political willingness in dealing with these challenges around the country’s education before they concentrate on the issue of statistics. We can’t reduce the outcome into numbers that calculated.”

WATCH: Matric class of 2018 raises the bar with 78.2% pass rate

READING SKILLS

The African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) says more focus needs to be placed on developing the reading skills of pupils and that this should be a focus area for teachers at primary schools.

The ACDP on Saturday congratulate the matric class of 2018 on achieving a 78.2% pass rate but says there are still areas of the education system that need to be improved on.

ACDP MP Cheryllyn Dudley believes more needs to be done at a primary school level to ensure more students make it to matric and subsequently pass.

Dudley says this is not a problem that is unique to South Africa: “We do know that we still have challenges, and it’s not like any other country in the world. But, I do think that there’s a whole desire to improve, drastically, in all of these areas.”

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