The poor performance of grade 12 learners in the district of Mount Frere of the Eastern Cape.
Canca, Christella Nokuzola.
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Despite the numerous intervention programmes provided by the Department of Education to make a difference in Grade 12 exam results, there are schools that are still performing below expected national and provincial standards. Although the Department of Education has provided strategies to improve the performance of Grade 12 learners, the four schools investigated in the Mount Frere district of the Eastern Cape are still performing poorly. These schools performance has been compared with the National and Provincial percentages from 1998 to 2001 and exhibits an alarming failing gap. During these years the pass percentage increase in the Eastern Cape was 7.72% in 1998, 14.6% in 1999. 15.9% in 2000 and 22.3% in 2001, showing a great decline during the years 1999 and 2001. Respondents believe that full involvement of stakeholders in schools and availability of resources would yield better exam results. Supervision by the School Management Teams is another important aspect that seemed to be neglected by the principals, deputy principals and heads of divisions. Educators' attitudes towards supervision should be made positive so that they see it as a development strategy more than an evaluation procedure. Limitations which include incomplete information, time constraints, the attitudes of stakeholders towards research, sampling and the compilation of the findings, did not have a severe impact on the recommendations. An important advantage of this investigation is that openness from respondents was achieved to a very great extent. Clearly there is a need to investigate this poor performance of Grade 12 learners which ranges from 33% to 20% pass rate during the 1998 to 2001 in the four schools. The provincial averages were 44.6%, 40.1%, 49.8% and 45.6% during the years investigated. Surely this investigation and the application of its recommendations can improve the performance of Grade 12 learners in these schools and those operating under the same conditions.