Oct 2020 2nd edition

Countdown to 2020 matric exams

Written by Allison Cooper

The countdown to the matric examinations has begun, with just weeks to go until candidates sit for the 2020 National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations.

The writing of the 2020 NSC examination will start on 5 November 2020 and end on 15 December 2020.

The Department of Basic Education rescheduled the exams to accommodate the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Today, we launch the official countdown to the examinations. It is now 34 days to the start of the NSC examination for the Matric Class of 2020.

"We appeal to parents, guardians and communities to rally behind all the candidates who will be writing their final exams this year. It is an extraordinary time for them and all of us, but they need the support more,” says Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga.

The Minister was speaking at a briefing to give an update on key developments in the basic education sector relating to the COVID-19 Alert Level 1 restrictions.

The June Senior Certificate examination was postponed, and will now be written together with the NSC examination in November 2020.

The examination timetable for the combined June and November examination had to be amended so that this examination commences in November instead of October 2020, as was initially planned.

“The late start of the examination is intended to allow as much time as possible to cover critical curriculum content, and to ensure that all examination processes are appropriately managed,” said the Minister.

The combined examination makes this the largest public examination that has been administered in the country. A total of 1 058 699 candidates will sit for the examinations.

“We certainly have never had to manage a number that large before. It is going to be a huge task, but one that we will need to ensure is managed and coordinated smoothly.

“All examination centres, both public and independent have been audited in preparation for the 2020 combined examination,” said Motshekga.

A protocol, to ensure compliance with COVID-19 rules, has been developed and distributed to guide all the chief invigilators, invigilators and all other officials involved in the management of the conduct and administration of the examination.

All provincial education departments have secured the extra rooms at existing examination centres, which are needed for the writing of the combined 2020 November Grade 12 examinations.

“It has been a difficult year, but there is still an opportunity to get tangible work done. We will need to work together with all stakeholders, strengthen our partnerships, intensify our efforts and rescue the country from a possible disaster brought on us by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the Minister.

Since the country migrated to Alert Level 1, the department is operating at full capacity under strict health and safety protocols.

“We want to continue to ensure safety for everybody. We wish to thank all South Africans for the support we have received. As individuals, we can indeed travel faster, but together, we can travel far,” said the Minister. –


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