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Principal urges government to stop 'pass one pass all' policy

INDISCRIMINATE promotion from the lower classes leads to poor matric results. A high school principal says that the education system frowns on failing weak pupils, thereby leading to a clogged matric class.

There are no remedial classes within public schools, so pupils who have not mastered the 3 Rs - Reading, wRiting, aRithmetic - get lost in the system until it fails them.

"As public schools, we are by law not allowed to turn down pupils even if they are not familiar with the language of instruction," the principal says.

The principal adds that the problem starts in Grade 10 when learning area streaming takes place. This is when pupils have to choose their own subjects.

"Most high school pupils get stuck in Grade 10 because we can't pass people without merit.

"Then they are stuck until the system eventually pushes them to the next grade," he says.

Pupils are condoned until they fail matric. Since repeats are not allowed in matric, this is how the education system discards these pupils.

According to the principal, Further Education and Training (FET) colleges need to be better advertised and managed so that parents will want to send their children there instead of waiting until they are let down by the educationsystem.

"If these FET colleges were not so poorly placed by the Education Department, parents would not be reluctant to send their kids there.

"These colleges need to be visible and some conventional schools need to be transferred to FET colleges," the principal says.

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