FS Education takes centre stage

The Free State Class of 2016 has made the province and country very proud. The matriculants received a 93.2 percent pass rate placing them first in the country, and also making them the only province to break the 90 percent threshold. Celebrations were held on Thursday 5 January 2017 at the Central University of the Free State where the top 100 learners in the province received bursaries and various prizes from the education department and sponsors. Pictured are Salemane Ngakana from Le Reng Secondary School, FS Education MEC, Tate Makgoe, and Johan Champion from Sentraal High School are celebrating their hard work. PHOTO: KATLEHO MORAPELA

The Free State Province has once again reclaimed the number one spot with its matric results. The province has knocked the Western Cape off the top spot with a 93.2 percent pass rate, excluding progressed learners. Speaking at the top 100 matric achievers’ function held at the Central University of Technology (CUT) in Bloemfontein, the provincial MEC for Education, Tate Makgoe, said this should not come as a surprise as the province had invested so much in the teaching and learning of matric pupils.
Makgoe said the province has managed to reach the national benchmark and has become the only province to break the 90 percent threshold. “This is an indication of what we can achieve despite the challenges we face. It shows that together we can achieve more. We have made it despite the challenges we faced in terms of limited resources and teachers’ skills. This has proven that as a province we can actually focus and achieve what needs to be achieved,” he said.
Makgoe said the aim for this year’s matriculants is to at least obtain a 95 percent pass rate. In realisation of this objective, the Acting Provincial Premier, Elzabe Rockman, added that this calls for more collaborative work between learners, teachers, subject advisers, SGBs and the community at large. Rockman alluded to support systems that are still needed for raising the bar. She mentioned that although resources in many rural schools remains a challenge, learners at these schools still outperform themselves and this serves as an indication of what is still to be achieved in the province. Rockman congratulated the Free State Education Department on this milestone and added that MEC Makgoe’s son also obtained six distinctions, which added a personal touch to the provincial achievement.
The prideful MEC further congratulated the class of 2016 on their great achievement, adding that the Free State has broken its own record by exceeding the 90 percent pass mark. He thanked teachers, parents and subject advisers for helping the learners.
The provincial top student, Johan Champion from Sentraal High School, achieved eight distinctions. The 18-year-old provincial matric golden boy obtained distinctions in Physical Science, Life Orientation, English First Additional Language, German Second Additional Language, Accounting, Life Sciences, Maths and Afrikaans Home Language. He plans to study medicine at the University of Stellenbosch. The top performing school in Mathematics and Accounting is Eunice Girls’ High School, while Oranje Girls’ School performed best in Physical Science.
Makgoe concluded by stating that the Free State Province can remain in the number one position. – Katleho Morapela