Here are South Africa’s matric results for 2021

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The Department of Basic Education (DBE) has published the matric results for the 2021 cohort, with the group achieving a pass rate of 76.4%.

This is an increase of 0.2 percentage points compared to the 2020 matric pass rate (76.2%). 256,031 learners received a Bachelor’s degree pass, and with it, possible entry to one of the country’s universities.

Motshekga noted that 36.4% of matric students achieved a bachelor’s pass (2020: 36.4%), 25.2% achieved a diploma pass (2020: 26%), and 14.8% achieved a higher certificate pass (2020: 13.7%).

A year earlier, 36.4% of matric students achieved a bachelor’s pass and 26% achieved a diploma pass. A further 13.7% achieved a higher certificate pass.

A total of 897,163 candidates registered to write the 2021 NSC examination – an increase of 23.6% from 2020. This includes 733,198 full-time students, the largest full-time cohort over the last few years. A total of 163,967 part-time candidates registered to write the examination.

Presenting the results on Thursday (20 January), Basic Education minister Angie Motshekga said the class of 2021 was the ‘most impacted’ by the Covid-19 pandemic as it endured two years of restrictions and disruptions.

These include differentiated timetables, a trimmed curriculum, and additional after-school interventions to keep learners safe during the pandemic. Together, these issues contributed to a ‘hostile’ learning environment, she said.

“For the past ten years, the NSC pass rates have consistently been going up from 60% in 2009, to above 70% in recent years. The class of 2021 must be commended for maintaining this trend, despite the astronomical challenges they faced,” she said.

The pass rates at a provincial level were as follows:

  • Free State: 85.7%
  • Gauteng: 82.8%
  • Western Cape: 81.2%
  • North West: 78.2%
  • KZN: 76.8%
  • Mpumalanga: 73.6%
  • Eastern Cape: 73%
  • Northern Cape: 71.4%
  • Limpopo: 66.7%

This was the eighth cohort of candidates to write the NSC examination that is aligned to the National Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS), a curriculum that is benchmarked against international standards.

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