Inmates achieve 76.7% matric pass rate

Friday, January 5, 2018

The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) has announced a 76.7% pass rate for inmates who sat for the 2017 National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations. 

“It is indeed a decade of huge success for formal education in Correctional Services following an achievement of 76.7% matric pass rate in the 2017 academic year, an improvement of 4.6% from the 2016 academic year.

“For the third time in a row, the DCS has surpassed the 70% national average pass threshold, wherein four schools recorded a 100% pass [rate]. This is a huge milestone for DCS as it registered the highest number of matriculants – 233 -- since the inception of formal education in 2007 when it only had one school with 21 inmates,” said the DCS in a statement on Friday. 

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga on Thursday announced the 75.1% matric pass rate for the Class of 2017. A total of 534 484 full-time candidates and 117 223 part-time candidates, wrote the 2017 NSC examinations. Of these, 401 435 candidates passed. 

DCS said its 76.7% pass rate comprises 48 Bachelor, 55 Diploma and 39 higher certificate passes.  This is an improvement compared to the 2016 academic year where 40 Bachelor, 47 Diploma and 12 certificate passes were recorded. 

“The quality of formal education in DCS is further demonstrated by the increased enrolment in subjects such as Mathematics, Accounting and Physical Science. The best performing inmate is Samkelo Mpofana from Usethubeni Youth Centre (Durban Westville Correctional Centre), who achieved five distinctions in IsiZulu, English, Life Orientation, History and Tourism. The other best performing inmates (Senzo Fundzo and Sicelo Chili) from the same school, respectively obtained three distinctions. 

“The top achiever in Mathematics and Physical Science is Shiba Ndumiso Brightman from Ekuseni Correctional Centre in Newcastle. This is a new school which had matric examinations for the first time in the 2017 academic year,” said the DCS. 

The Acting National Commissioner of Correctional Services, James Smalberger, attributed this achievement to the strong work ethic, resilience and dedication of both educators and inmates, who worked tirelessly throughout the 2017 academic year.

“Education is not the only avenue towards recovering and protecting one’s dignity in a correctional facility, but it is a major one. Further to that, it offers a modicum of the authority required of a person for self-creation,” said Smalberger.  

Assistance from the Department of Basic Education has been instrumental in cementing Formal Education as a viable rehabilitation programme in Correctional Services.  

“The matric results are outstanding and such will encourage other inmates to enroll for Formal Education, which continues to be the beating heart of rehabilitation,” Smalberger said. – SAnews.gov.za

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