Much excitement and nerves as the majority of learners across the Western Cape write their first NSC exam

By Debbie Schafer, Western Cape Minister of Education:

The 2015 NSC examination period kicked off today with many candidates across the Western Cape writing their first NSC examination – English Home Language, English First Additional Language and English Second Additional Language. Thus far, there have been no irregularities reported.

Today I visited Gardens Commercial High School where 112 candidates wrote their first exam. The school is aiming to achieve a 99% pass rate this year, compared to 91.2% in 2014.

I visited the school to find out first-hand from candidates how they felt about their first written examination of the 2015 NSC.

Learners were initially rather subdued, but when asked how the paper had gone, most were happy with it, and some visible relief set in.

The numbers for full-time and part-time candidates registered to write these subjects are as follows:

Subject Full-Time Part-Time  
English First Additional Language 35039 2268
English Home Language 21514 1139
English Second Additional Language 6 0

This afternoon 9 245 candidates will write the Consumer Studies Examination and 771 will complete the Hospitality Studies Examination.

This year a record number of 55 919 full time candidates will be writing the NSC.

There are a further 12 251 part-time candidates registered for the 2015 examinations.

The examinations will be written at 442 examination centres across the province and will end the final exam on the 27th November 2015.

It is important that candidates are available up to the 4th of December 2015 for any eventuality – such as the need to rewrite a paper.

This year 102 examination papers will be written and over 800 000 examination scripts distributed.

A record 2 698 invigilators have been appointed to monitor and assist in the examination process.

A training programme across the province was provided in September to ensure that all principals, exam centre managers, chief invigilators at all exam centres received the appropriate training, especially in the implementation of new exam procedures adopted, to enhance the security and integrity of the examination system.

The marking of the examinations will take place from around the 5th December 2015 to 14th December 2015. The WCED has 3 659 markers to mark the examination scripts.

In the Western Cape, we continue to take positive steps to improve on the quality of marking in the NSC, this includes competency testing for markers in the NSC examinations.

To ensure that the mark calculations of our markers are correct, the WCED has appointed 525 mark checkers.

The much anticipated results of the NSC are expected to be announced on the 5th of January 2015 by Minister Motshekga. Schools and candidates will receive their results on the 6th January 2015.

We encourage all our candidates for the 2015 NSC examinations to stay focused and to put in the hard work required to prepare for the upcoming examinations.

I have every confidence in our matrics, who have worked hard throughout the school year.

I wish them all the best of luck for this final leg of their school career and am sure that they will do both themselves and this province proud.