IT WAS a joyous celebration at Dendron High School in Limpopo when MEC for education Dickson Masemola announced that the school was among the best in the province.
Masemola paid a surprise visit to the school yesterday and found that all systems were in place for a good start of the academic year.
Though no communication of sorts took place between him and the school management about his visit, lessons began at 7.30am.
Masemola applauded the Grade 12 class of 2009, teachers and parents for their hard work.
Though the formal announcement for the matric results at schools were expected tomorrow, Masemola announced that Dendron, together with Pietersburg High School and Mbilwi High School, outclassed the other schools. They achieved 100percent pass rates.
Of the 147 matric pupils that sat for their exams , all passed with two pupils scoring seven distinctions .
The school was established in 1999. It started with Grade 8 to Grade 10 and had their first Grade 12 in 2003.
The school has been producing 100percent pass rates ever since, except during 2008 when two pupils failed.
Asked what his secret was, principal Moloko Matsapola said teachers, pupils and parents were committed to teaching and learning.
But the same dedication and commitment could not be realised at a neighbouring school, Nare High in Moletji, some 15km away from Dendron.
Masemola was disappointed when he was greeted by a large queue of parents battling to register their children for admission to the school.
Teachers and pupils were roaming around while a few of them were waiting impatiently in classrooms to be taught.
"What on earth is happening at this school? We expected learning and teaching to start in earnest today and yet we see pupils and teachers loitering around the school," Masemola told the baffled principal.
With a 32,3percent matric pass rate, the school is one of the worst performers in the province.
Masemola ordered the principal to pull up his socks and bring back the culture of learning and teaching at the school "or else you will regret".
Department of education spokesperson Ndo Mangala said yesterday that learning and teaching started in earnest in most schools in the province except in a few schools where parents had brought children for admission at the time meant for learning.