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U failed… now what?

Michele du Plessis

To all the 2019 Matrics that achieved a pass, congratulations and well done. To those Matrics that tried their utmost but failed, don’t lose hope. It is not the end of the world.

“It’s a crucial time in these learners’ lives as a matric certificate has become a basic requirement for getting a job in South Africa while also being the gateway to further education,” says Jackie Carroll, chief executive officer of Media Works, adult education and training (AET) provider.

What if you’ve passed matric but you haven’t achieved your desired results?

Your first option in this instance would be to apply for a remark if you think that you did better than what you’re final results indicate. You can apply for a remark either at your school or district education office in your province. The closing date for remark applications is 22 January 2020 and you can find out more about this process by visiting the Department of Basic Education’s website.

Your second option would be to register for supplementary exams and take another opportunity at improving your symbols. The Department of Education has set down May/June 2020 as a period where candidates can improve their results or complete outstanding results via supplementary exams. The closing date for applications for supplementary exams is 31 January 2020.

You’ve failed matric and want a second chance?

The Department of Education (DoE) also offers a programme called ‘Second Chance’, which provides learners with free support. The Second Chance programme enables learners to write supplementary exams for a maximum of two subjects to meet the pass requirements of the NSC examinations. These exams are written after learners have received a total of 12 hours of face-to-face classes to give them the best chance of passing. When it comes to supplementary exams, you cannot return to your school to re-attend classes. Instead, you’ll have the option of attending classes at a community college or a private learning institution.

“Whether you’re undergoing the Second Chance programme or if you’re simply doing a rewrite to improve your marks, you can also prepare for your supplementary exams by using online courses from Matric Works,” Carroll said.

Matric Works provides all the information required to pass matric, using the same curriculum as a school would use, but in an e-learning format.

Lastly, if you’re over the age of 21 and you don’t have a matric, you still have the option of attaining your Amended Senior Certificate (ASC).

The ASC is a matric qualification that is recognised by employers. It can also grant you entry to tertiary education as long as you have the necessary qualifying symbols.

There are several ways of studying towards your ASC, including going to adult community colleges or via private learning institutions or obtain your ASC via Matric Works.


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