Start date for matric exams pushed forward to accommodate elections

Finals were supposed to start on 1 November, the same day the nation goes to the polls. But the Department of Basic Education has released a circular on Wednesday morning saying they would now start on 27 October instead.

FILE: Exams for English, business studies and non-official languages will be written on 27 and 28 of October. Picture: 123rf.com

JOHANNESBURG - Matric exams are set to start a few days earlier this year to accommodate the local government election date.

Finals were supposed to start on 1 November, the same day the nation goes to the polls.

But the Department of Basic Education has released a circular on Wednesday morning saying they would now start on 27 October instead.

“The Council of Education Ministers held a special meeting where the decision was taken earlier this morning. The CEM meeting took place following the series of consultations with the key stakeholders in the basic education sector,” the department said.

Exams for English, business studies and non-official languages will be written on 27 and 28 of October.

“The best interest of the learner was a key consideration in addition to ensuring that a minimum change to the current timetable was made to avoid confusion.”

The 1 November election date was a curve ball at the education sector that has to fit in 207 question papers over a period of just five weeks.

“The Department of Basic Education urges candidates preparing for the examination to keep working hard. The Department has made available a wide range of resources to assist the learners with support materials on different platforms through the Remote and Digital Learning Programme Woza Matrics,” the department added.