21 April 2019


Bokone Bophirima matriculants ready for final exams


Obakeng Maje and Elias Malindi


23 September 2016

Bokone Bophirima's Department of Education and Sport Development launched its 'Last Push' Grade 12 examinations preparation campaign at Batlhaping Secondary School in Taung last Friday.

MEC Sello Lehari said Bokone Bophirima is determined to do better in this year's examinations for the final Grade of schooling.

"We want to improve our position nationally and we are aiming for gold. We met with all stakeholders to be part of this quest. Everyone is ready and we also urge every member within our society to rally behind the campaign," Lehari said.

The main purpose of the 'Last Push' campaign is to mobilise the broader community, particularly parents, to support learners during the examination period. The campaign encourages parents to help learners organise previous years' question papers, assist them with revision, provide learners with newspaper supplements and monitor their cellular phone usage during examination period.

The MEC pleaded with stakeholders to create an environment for children to study without any hindrance.

"I am appealing to all stakeholders to create an opportunity for our children to strive in their examinations. Councillors and dikgosi tsa rona, I am making this plea to you to talk with our communities to allow learners to write examinations without disturbances," said Lehari.

MEC Lehari said the province was unhappy that it had dropped from position two to four with last year's Grade 12 examination results.
"However, nothing will deter us on our mission now. We already have a plan to address underperforming schools' challenges. We will be having extra classes during the week and we have extended the programme to weekends. Subjects specialists will also be available and they have been visiting underperforming schools to boost the pupils' confidence since June," Lehari said.

He added that there was a sense of anticipation from Grade 12 learners across the province and that they all know what is expected from them.
"Everyone is ready for the final examinations. We are also adamant that we have disciplined, dedicated and determined teachers who will ensure that we achieve our mark".

In 2009 President Jacob Zuma declared that "education is a societal matter". The 'Last Push' campaign seeks to compliment the objectives set out by national government on community involvement towards the provision of quality education. This is also in line with Bokone Bophirima province's priorities of rebranding, renewal and repositioning as outlined by the Fifth government administration.

The 'Last Push' campaign is not a new phenomenon for the Department of Education and Sport Development. The campaign was first started in 2013 and it helped the province reach the second position in the country for two consecutive years, the first time this was achieved.

MEC Lehari said the department understood that Bokone Bophirima is a predominantly rural province affected by poverty and has planned assistance accordingly.
"We also are addressing matters that affect pupils like those who come from deprived backgrounds. We have compiled a profiling report of all those pupils who needed extra support. We understand that learners cannot concentrate in class if they are affected by background issues," he said.

Executive Mayor of Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District Municipality, Boitumelo Mahlangu, said her municipality supports the department in its campaign.
"We will also encourage parents to take part in the pursuit. This is the crucial moment for Grade 12s across the province. We need to give them more time to prepare for their final examinations.
"The future of our children lies within the education system and we want to see our future and better leaders through these children. Education is the only gateway vehicle from poverty, so let us encourage and support them," Mahlangu said.

National Association of Provincial Teachers of South Africa (NAPTOSA) chairperson in Greater Taung, Ketlaodirelang Mmolaeng, said his teachers' union is behind the initiative. "We continue to ensure that our teachers receive the necessary support. As a union, we will continue to ensure that teachers have got resourceful equipments to do their jobs. Working together with the department, we will achieve our objectives. So, we support them in improving the quality of learning," Mmolaeng said.

One of matriculants at Batlhaping Secondary School, Orateng Morota (20) said he is ready for the final examinations.
"We have been working hard and we are determined to improve our marks. We have created social media study groups where we share knowledge with other learners. Our teachers are also part of that, so it is easier to get assistance," Morota said.

Fellow learner, Duduetsang Keokame, (16) had this to say: "Our teachers always encouraged us to work hard. However, we need a co-action, co-learning partnership between school teachers, learners and parents."