Students and teachers pulled out all the stops during the holidays to prepare for the matric exams

18 Jul 2022 in Where We Govern

Over 26 000 students gave up their holidays to participate in winter school programmes arranged by the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) and schools across the province. In addition, over 185 000 unique users accessed our ePortal site resources for all grades, and 524 staff members received training through the Cape Teaching and Leadership Institute (CTLI) while schools were closed.

Our districts have been hard at work to ensure that our matric students are ready for the upcoming trial and NSC exams, using different models for supporting students. While Metro North Education District held a virtual programme that streamed lessons to 10 062 students at their schools, Cape Winelands Education District held five residential camps for 445 students.

The Overberg Education District’s Specialised Learner and Educator Support Services (SLES) team also held a weekend life and study skills camp for at-risk students, while Eden and Central Karoo Education District undertook a circuit-based support programme for progressed students with 204 students over two days. The West Coast Education district held revision camps at 3 schools with 322 students in attendance – a 99% attendance rate!

Traditional winter school programmes reached over 5 800 students in Metro East Education District, 1 463 in Metro South Education District, and 4 366 students in Metro Central Education District.

We thank every one of the teachers and officials who gave of their time over the holidays – their dedication and expertise will stand the Class of 2022 in good stead to pass their exams. And we commend the students who chose to invest in their own futures by attending these revision classes.

Students have been putting in the hours from home, too, by using the WCED’s ePortal to access learning resources across all grades. Usage of the ePortal increased by 101% compared to last year’s June/July holidays, with over 185 000 unique users accessing the site – including those from other provinces. The site includes 8 988 free Grade 12 resources to support our matrics, including revision guides, past papers and marking guidelines, and Telematics lessons.

547 staff members used some of their holiday to improve their skills at the CTLI. The courses were offered on a wide variety of topics, including Women In and Into Leadership and Management Positions, Recruitment and Selection Training, ICT integration, and contact sessions for both the Advanced Certificate in Teaching (ACT) and the Advanced Diploma in Education: School Leadership and Management (ADE).

This is exactly the kind of extra effort that we will need to overcome the learning losses caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, especially in the Foundation Phase. We are looking forward to the new term and the interventions that our teachers will be undertaking to ensure that we get back on track as soon as possible in the Western Cape.