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After the celebrations, what challenges await the matrics of 2022

Neelam Rahim / neelam@radioislam.co.za

4 min read
25 January 2023 / 21:30 pm CAT

Picture credit: Sunday Times

Picture credit: Sunday Times

We have seen days of celebration last week amidst the announcement of more than 80% in the matric pass rate and individual students and schools who did better than good. However, now that the euphoria of passing Grade 12 has passed, the question is where to go from here for the matrics who scraped through with a 30% pass in one or two subjects and those who, despite several distinctions, may not make it into University because of the lack of space or funds.

In an interview with Radio Islam International, Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic at Wits, Rukshana Osman and Career Councillor at Wits, Lindie Chili, highlight the stats, challenges and possible opportunities for students.

Eight hundred thousand students graded one from twelve years ago; of that number, only half or a little less have passed matric and even fewer of those into Universities.

Prof Osman said it is important to recognise the expectation or assumption that everyone who matriculates must attend University.

“The needs of the country are different and much more is needed in the technical and vocational area,” she added.

There is a challenge for missing middle groups made up of parents whose income is above the government threshold but cannot afford University fees and do not qualify for funding. Many of the excellent passes are from students from this category.

Meanwhile, many high achievers still need to figure out what they want to do. Sometimes there’s paralysis due to too many options or what career to choose.

Chili advises that it starts with self-awareness following research.

She said parental support is very important in this journey as parents can instil awareness in their children of careers outside the traditional choices.

The Minister of Education had previously shown concern for this academic group as more or less two years of their learning has been conducted online rather than physically present.

Prof Osman commended three categories of people for their efforts. She says, “the resilience of teachers, the students themselves and the parents.”

Listen to the interview with Moulana Sulaimaan Ravat, Professor Rukshana Osman and Lindie Chili on Radio Islam’s podcast.


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