DA welcomes Motshekga's task team report

Johannesburg - The DA has welcomed on Monday the basic education ministerial task team's recommendations on the current matric pass mark.

"We applaud... the decision by the minister [Angie Motshekga] to undertake the investigation, and, importantly, to publicly release the resulting report in its entirety," DA MP Annette Lovemore said in a statement.

"The report is excellent in its reach and its empirical base. Its findings must be considered credible."

Motshekga had tasked a team of experts to examine media reports and research which criticises the national senior certificate pass requirements.

The team submitted a 188-page report which Motshekga said she was studying. The report recommended that the department consider making mathematics a compulsory subject.

"A major effect that the introduction of such compulsory subject combinations is expected to have is an increased proportion enrolling for mathematics for sound educational reasons."

The report projected that if mathematics was made compulsory it would have to be phased in over a few years to avoid a decline in overall enrolments in science-related subjects.

A national campaign to educate people about the value, place, and role of mathematical literacy and mathematics was also suggested.

The department was also urged to increase the minimum pass rate, which currently stood at 30%.

Lovemore said a lot of changes should take place at schools.

"The problem lies in the classroom, and predominantly with the teacher. All schools must offer maths and be properly resourced to do so.

"Maths teachers must be comprehensively tested, and placed to teach the grade or area of maths in which they are competent," she said.

Motshekga was expected to make further announcements relating to the report in due course.