NATIONAL NEWS - More than 50 000 matric learners sat down on Monday to write the common assessment task (CAT) for life orientation (LO). Bronagh Hammond, Western Cape Education Department (WCED) communications director, said 54 741 full-time candidates were registered to write LO on Monday.
The CAT for LO is part of the final promotion mark in Grade 12 and therefore, all Grade 12 learners must write it. "It was a two-hour paper which started at 09:00. Overall the day was a success, and we are pleased with how the examination proceeded."
Hammond said some 95 427 candidates will write the matric exams in this session. "This is a larger group than is usual for the end-of-year exams because the May/June 2020 session was combined with this one, and includes full-time (54 741 - more than last year) and part-time / repeat matric candidates, those writing supplementary exams from last year's results, and candidates for the Senior Certificate."
Two practical exams (CAT and IT) were held this week, while the main exams commence on 5 November with English Home Language, First Additional Language and Second Additional Language.
Hammond said schools have been prioritising the matrics since schools re-opened in June. Grade 12s have had the most class time of any of the grades, and while the other grades have rotated their timetables, matrics have been in class every day. "Our matric teachers have been doing a sterling job to prepare our learners, and the WCED has made more resources available to matrics to help them prepare for the exams than any class before them."
The Department of Basic Education is also providing support for matrics through the Woza Matric broadcasts, the Mind the Gap study guide series aimed at bridging the gap in learners' understanding of commonly tested concepts to improve pass rates, and the matric support package with a variety of resources, including study material, tips for parents and digital resources.
These include 4 000 resources specifically for Grade 12s on the ePortal; a dedicated matric support page on the department's website, which includes tips for success and advice on preparing for exams; revision videos and prescribed literature lists; a telematics programme with revision broadcasts in 14 subjects; specific revision materials for self-study delivered to schools for each learner; past question papers and marking memoranda and lessons broadcast on the radio.
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