Afrikaans markers hard to come by, but matric exams good to go

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Umalusi chief executive officer Dr Mafu Rakometsi, left, and senior manager Mary-Louise Madalane at a media briefing in Johannesburg. PHOTO: NIGEL SIBANDA

The council for quality assurance in general and further education and training, Umalusi, has approved administrators of the 2019 national senior certificate (NSC) final examinations.

The council said it has conducted a thorough readiness assessment and strengthened security throughout exam centres, including providing training and security clearance to all the staff involved in the examination processes.

Umalusi chief executive officer Dr Mafu Rakometsi said the education assessment council had beefed up security and would not tolerate any form of cheating.

“We have identified areas which are likely to compromise the examinations. We would like to warn teachers and pupils to refrain from any form of cheating and copying,” Rakometsi said.

He said copying and group cheating often happened at school level and they had trained chief invigilators and independent invigilators to place in high-risk areas that have experienced cheating in previous years.

One of the highlighted challenges that needed urgent attention included the shortage of markers for the Afrikaans examination papers.

The council offers the examination papers in both English and Afrikaans and a limited number of markers are available for the Afrikaans versions.

Ramoketsi said the audit conducted by Umalusi officials had highlighted with great concern evidence of a shortage of markers in the Northern Cape, Western Cape and Eastern Cape.

He also gave Umalusi’s position regarding the proposed Grade 9 general education certificate (GEC) and referred to it as a transitional qualification, not an exit qualification.

“One of the advantages of the GEC is that it could provide valuable national data to gauge the performance of our education system. However, Umalusi will firstly evaluate the GEC qualification and then issue a formal statement,” said Rakometsi.

With a decrease of 40,000 candidates, a total of 751,668 candidates will sit for the final NSC exam from October 23 to November 28. – Anastasi Mokgobu/The Citizen