Grade 10 and Grade 11 pass requirements for this year have been eased as schools grapple with the impact of Covid-19.
Basic Education Department director-general Mathanzima Mweli has directed schools to internally set tests for these grades, a move that effectively cancels national common paper examinations this year.
The school-set tests should only cover what a school has been able to teach during this year, and not the entire syllabus.
“Controlled tests should only be set on content taught, content not taught cannot be assessed,” Mweli said.
This meant that schools that have taught just a portion of the curriculum should test learners on what the learners learnt.
Mweli conceded that schools have covered the curriculum variably this year.
“The additional loss of teaching time due to rotational attendance, Covid-19 infections, and the additional four-week closure has resulted in a variable completion of the Annual Teaching Plans.”
Mweli further directed the schools to pass learners largely on marks they obtained during yearly assessments.
“The final tests marks should weigh less than the yearly marks, contrary to established standards. The current 25% weighting of School Based Assessment is increased to 60% and the examination component which is currently 75% is decreased to 40% resulting in a 60:40 weighting as opposed to the current 25:75 weighting.”