South Africa debates the formalisation of Grade 9 as an exit point for school


News that the Department of Education is planning to turn Grade 9 into an exit point for learners left South Africa furious on Friday.

If implemented, the change will allow learners in their early teens to formally leave school with a General Education Certificate, as opposed to the National Senior Certificate received after completing 12 years of school at the end of Matric.

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Many took to Twitter to express their feelings of anger and bewilderment after Basic Education Minister Angie Motshega made the announcement on Thursday evening.

A government that can’t employ its formal graduates now wants to release unprepared grade 9’s into the world,” one user tweeted. 

Other South Africans, however, noted that there was value in the change.

Some also pointed out that the option to leave school at Grade 9 isn’t new, and the Department of Education simply wants to make it official.

It’s clear from the tweets that, though there are valid arguments in favour of the government’s plan, South Africans are convinced that we do not have the correct systems in place to profit from Grade 9 learners leaving school.

Feature image: Pixabay via Pexels

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