Mkhize targets 80% pass rate

KWAZULU-NATAL has set itself a target of 80percent matric pass rate by 2014.

The ambitious target was revealed by Premier Zweli Mkhize during his state of the province address in Pietermaritzburg's Royal Show Grounds yesterday. The province improved its pass rate by 3,5percent from 57,6percent in 2008 to 61,1percent last year.

Of the 132176 pupils who wrote the examinations, 80733 passed while 26287 qualified to study at university.

Mkhize said the global economy has shifted significantly to be driven by communication of knowledge and information and the technological base without the hindrance of conventional political and physical geographic borders.

"Competitiveness and capacity to control and operate highly sophisticated systems of management and production, as well as discovery of new techniques through research and development of new products is what will determine world leaders," Mkhize said.

He said the number of schools that got 100percent pass was encouraging, as was the performance on science and maths.

He also said crime was one of the challenges that "we should not allow to make our claim to freedom ring hollow for the fear, waste of life and the loss of property that it inflicts on society".

"Fighting crime requires the same passion, intensity, creativity and unity as we demonstrated in the fight against apartheid. Unity and partnership, solidarity and support should be the basis of our combined effort to defeat crime."

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