Professor Sarah Howie appointed to the Education Ministerial task team

Posted on October 17, 2013

The membership of a ministerial committee to oversee the finalisation of the curriculum and assessment policy statements for technical schools has been announced in terms of the National Education Policy Act (1996).The committee is also mandated to advise the Minister of Basic Education on other strategic matters.

The eleven member committee includes, among others, representatives from the Department of Basic Education, Department of Higher Education and Training, Umalusi Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training, South African Qualifications Authority, Higher Education South Africa and Association of School Governing Bodies.

The Ministerial Committee will be responsible for:

  • Investigating all facets of the National Senior Certificate and making recommendations to the Minister on how these matters can be addressed;
  • Demonstrating to the South African public that the Department of Basic Education is committed to maintaining the credibility of the National Senior Certificate; and
  • Improving the public perception of and confidence in the National Senior Certificate qualification.

The terms of reference of the Ministerial Committee will be as follows:

  • To establish from current research and media reports the main concerns relating to the National Senior Certificate
  • To conduct a comparative study of the promotion requirements of the National Senior Certificate and other similar exit qualifications in a few countries that are of international repute
  • To consult with the key recipients of the National Senior Certificate in the South African academic, workplace and business environment and identify their concerns about the National Senior Certificate and how these can be addressed in the short to medium term
  • to evaluate the currency of Mathematics and Mathematical Literacy and whether this is the best option for the South African schooling system in terms of preparing learners for the workplace and higher education studies
  • to ascertain whether Mathematical Literacy should not rather be separated from Mathematics
  • to investigate the possibility of introducing another level of Mathematics, namely Technical Mathematics, which is related to the technology subjects as proposed by the Principals of Technical Schools
  • to evaluate the “value add” of Life Orientation as a subject that is designed to inculcate morals, values, physical education and career guidance and to determine whether Life Orientation should not be a non-examinable subject
  • to arrange public hearings on the findings and preliminary report of the Ministerial Committee, and
  • to make recommendations on the key concerns relating to the National Senior Certificate, and the implications of these recommendations, if implemented.

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