By Jacques Smalle (MPL), DA Spokesperson for Education:
The DA in Limpopo is disappointed yet unsurprised by the Department of Education’s flagrant denial of the ongoing examinations crisis that has engulfed the province.
The press conference held by the department, earlier today, is nothing more than a cheap, misleading sales pitch which is completely out of touch with the daily realities of learners, teachers and schools.
The department failed to respond to the looming question of the difference in the standard of examinations from Grade 1-9 which were set by the Circuit offices and the shoddy work of the department in printing the Grade 10-11 NSC exams.
Instead of releasing a new and final exam time table which would immediately bring about stability, the department keeps shifting the blame back and forth between district and circuit offices.
The DA is concerned that the department has severely compromised the integrity of exams through randomly picking printing businesses to photocopy papers, changing the exam timetable four times and allowing learners to write the same paper at different times.
Despite several requests, the department refuses to produce a stable timetable and further divulge details around the source of funding for the copying of exam papers as well as the stakeholders who will be responsible for the smooth running of exams from this point onwards.
The public ordinary schools sector in the province currently has 187 001 Grade 10 learners and 144 026 Grade 11 learners affected by the chaos caused by the department.
There is still no proof of the department making significant strides to support schools and districts which are clearly overwhelmed and under-resourced.
It is clear that neither the MEC nor the HOD is inept to deal with the serious challenges that they are facing and the DA will now call on the minister of basic education to investigate the entire fiasco and to hold responsible officials accountable.