The executive director of education, arts and culture, Sanet Steenkamp, says the Namibia Senior Secondary Certificate Ordinary (NSSCO) and National Senior Secondary Advanced Subsidiary (NSSCAS) examination results would gradually improve after 2022 disastrous results.
She was speaking yesterday on the eve of the release of 2023’s results tomorrow.
“With all the targeted interventions by the ministry, regional improvement plans and school-based action plans, there will be a gradual improvement in results,” she said.
Steenkamp said regardless of the high failure rate of candidates who sat for the 2022 national examinations, she remains hopeful and optimistic about education in Namibia.
“Yes, we may not see the fruits immediately, but there have been targeted interventions . . .
“The ministry has not only invested in funding, but also in infrastructure and resources for teaching and learning in classrooms,” she said.
She said the 2022 results were a true reflection of the profound impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the educational landscape.
“We must see that there is a holistic impact. We need to look at the impact Covid-19 had on our well-being, our physical and mental health.
“Pupils attended school in shifts, meaning they did not have sufficient time to spend in the classroom in a free manner that allows you to use methodology to instil discipline, but also ensure that social distance is taking place, and that learning is also taking place,” she said.
Last year’s national examination results for grades 11 and 12 sent shock waves through the country, as 80% of the candidates who sat for the NSSCO and AS level exams failed to qualify for admission to tertiary institutions.
A total of 38 019 full-time candidates wrote the 2022 NSSCO exams at 363 full-time centres, of which only 5 812 scored 25 points or higher, while 8 133 (21%) qualified to progress to AS level in 2023.
This number showed a significant drop of 8 958 candidates, compared to the total number of full-time candidates registered for national examinations at the same level in 2021.
more than 30 000 pupils were expelled from the formal school system, leaving them with no option but to rewrite some subjects.
Namibia National Students Organisation spokesperson Dorthea Nangolo yesterday said the organisation expects a 55% pass rate.
“Our expectations this time around, perhaps very ambitious, is to see a more than 55% pass rate, and also for the education ministry to have proper statistics, accounting for every pupil who is supposed to exit basic education.
“We are also very hopeful that the results would show a significant improvement in comparison to 2023 and 2024,” she said.
Lecturer Theresia Mushaandja cautioned against expecting too much.
“Our education system from top to bottom leaves a lot to be desired. Last year’s results were named Covid results, but can we expect anything better?
“What has been done to ensure that the results get better?” she asked.
Mushaandja said a pass is only a pass when the results enable an individual to function at the next level.
“As for the results we await, I believe we will see an improvement, though very slight.
“As long as there is no coordination between the education ministry and other industries which are fed by the education system, our education would mean little,” she said.
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