With the first month of 2021 steadily ticking by the Department of Basic Education (DBE) has provided an update on the marking of Matric examinations from 2020.
Elijah Mhlanga, Chief Director: Communications & Media: Department of Basic Education, has recently released these numbers in regards to the process:
- “45,000 markers (thanks to you)
- 14 million scripts (size of the work)
- 131 marking centres (the venues)
- Progress: 79% of the work is done. Marking centres starting to pack up. 4 days to go to the end”
By our rough math that’s just over 11 million scripts marked and just under three million left to go. That’s a tall order for four days of work, even with the 45 000 markers working at things.
Mhlanga has been touring the country visiting the various schools and marking centres dealing with the exams. As we were told by the DBE in late 2020 this is the biggest Matric class that South Africa has ever seen with more than a million students sitting down to write.
While Mhlanga and the DBE have touted a safety first approach for the people marking these papers there have, unfortunately, been breakouts of infections at marking centres. The most recent update on this states that there were recently eight positive cases at marking centres around the country.
The 2020 Matric exam results are planned to be released on 22nd February 2021. As for the rest of the education system School Management Teams (SMTs) will return to campuses on 25th January, teachers on 1st February and finally students on 15th February. All these dates are the most current from the government but they may see change as we get closer to the end of January and COVID-19 shows no sign of stopping its second wave in the country.
For now all students around the country can do is continue waiting on their results or the return to class. Even with a COVID-19 vaccine on the horizon the 2021 school year will face many of the same issues that plagued 2020.