Sensitive Dramatic Arts question to be excluded

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Pretoria – The Department of Basic Education’s request for part of a question in the Dramatic Arts matric exam paper to be excluded from the marking process has been approved by Umalusi.

“The Department of Basic Education has submitted a formal request to the Quality Assurance Council [Umalusi] to consider a concession, where parts of the question that may have been perceived as offensive by some learners be excluded from the marking process and the marking guideline be adjusted to accommodate this concession.

“Umalusi has granted approval and the marking process across the country in Dramatic Arts will be administered in accordance with this amendment,” said the department in a statement.

Media reports had raised concern about a question in the Dramatic Arts paper in the matric exams which was based on an extract of a set work - the play, Tshepang, which depicts the rape of a nine-month-old baby.

The examining panel responsible for the setting of the Dramatic Arts question paper, together with the internal moderator appointed by the department, the Umalusi moderation team, and representatives from the provincial education departments had met to discuss the question paper earlier this week.

The meeting was provided with samples of scripts of the paper from across the country to establish any disadvantage that learners may have suffered given the sensitivity of the question in the paper.

The department said while there was no compelling evidence to confirm that learner responses were adversely affected by the sensitivity of the question, it did concede that parts of the question may have been perceived negatively by some learners, depending on their personal backgrounds. -