South Africa’s Matric Pass Rate: 2007 – 2017

Monday, 15 January, 2018 - 09:36

South Africa’s matric pass rate for 2017 is 75.1% with a 2.6% increase from 2016 results

The Department of Education has announced the matric pass rate for 2017: 75.1% – 2.6 % points higher than in 2016.

629,155 full-time grade 12’s sat in for the 2017 NSC examinations, while an additional 173,276 part-time learners also wrote. Of these candidates, 534,484 full-time candidates, and 117,223 part-time candidates wrote the exams.

This discrepancy is because of the number of progressed learners (learners which have failed Grade 11 twice) which will write their remaining exams later this year. If these students are excluded, the pass rate rises to 76.5%.

As many as 58 subjects were written in 2017, of which marks for 16 were increased, and marks for four were decreased as part of Umalusi’s standardisation process.

2014’s drop of 2.4 percentage points in the rate marked the first time in the Jacob Zuma presidency that the matric pass rate recorded a decline. This was followed by a 5 percentage point drop in 2015. However, this has been followed by increases in both 2016 and 2017.

The matric pass rate has shown major improvement under Jacob Zuma’s leadership – hitting an all-time high of 78.2% in 2013 – which sent alarm bells ringing among academics, who claim to have not seen any real improvement in the quality of South African education over time.

The below is a graph showing how the reported matric pass rates have changed between 2007 and 2017.

Year Pass rate Change
2007 65.2% -1.3
2008 62.5% -2.7
2009 60.6% -1.9
2010 67.8% +7.2
2011 70.2% +2.4
2012 73.9% +3.7
2013 78.2% +4.3
2014 75.8% -2.4
2015 70.7% -5.1
2016 72.5% +1.8
2017  75.1% +2.6

 

Photo Courtesy: Youth Village

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