The Independent Examinations Board (IEB) is boasting a matric pass rate of 98.67% this year, up from the 98.30% in 2015.
The results enable 87.61% of those who passed to go on to study for a degree if they want to, up from the 85.26% in 2015.
And 9.83% qualified for entry to diploma study, compared with 11.66% in 2015, leaving 1.23% to study at Higher Certificate level, compared to the 1.27% of 2015.
The matric results for the Department of Basic Education’s schools for 2016 are not available yet, but the pass rate for 2015 was 70.7%.
The IEB said that the Combined Abitur-NSC, which is offered by the German schools in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria, yielded a pass rate of 100%, with all 66 candidates who registered qualifying for university entrance.
Pupils who wrote these exams can also go to German universities if they want to, in terms of a government-to-government agreement.
The IEB schools are known colloquially as private schools and tend to have much higher school fees than state schools.
The results of the Advance Programme courses were also released by the IEB – these are extra subjects that pupils take to expand their knowledge in a particular field.
Of the 1 407 pupils from IEB schools and the 1 275 pupils in state schools who took AP maths, 87.9% achieved a pass above 40%, compared to 87.7% in 2015.
Of the 652 pupils doing AP English, 98.12% achieved a pass mark of 40% and above, while all pupils doing AP Afrikaans got 40% and above.
‘Humanity, empathy and maturity’
This year, 11 022 full-time pupils and 703 part-time pupils wrote the coveted National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations at 237 venues across southern Africa in October and November, with some hailing from Mozambique, Swaziland and Namibia.
The number of examination venues also increased from the 209 in 2015, due to the addition of 10 new schools in the Umalusi-monitored IEB system.
IEB CEO Anne Oberholzer said the board was proud of the class of 2016 reaching its first major learning milestone, but cautioned that it was not all about the percentages on the certificates.
She stressed that it was more about the knowledge and understanding gained.
“To have a certificate with good results, but not the substance of learning required for success, simply means facing failure at the next step of your learning career,” said Oberholzer.
“The challenges of our daily lives require more than intelligence and hard work – we need people with humanity, empathy and maturity, who are confident and assertive, but most importantly, ethical and generous in spirit,” said Oberholzer.
She recommended that anybody thinking of enrolling their children in an independent school first make sure the school was registered with a reputable association, the provincial education department and Umalusi.
Registration can be checked with the Independent Schools Association of South Africa (Isasa), the Association of Christian Schools International (Acsi) as well as a number of religious school associations, such as the Catholic, Anglican, Methodist, Muslim and Jewish schools.[Source: news24]