Independent Democrats Member of the Western Cape Provincial Parliament, Mr Rodney Lentit is concerned by the number of high school drop outs in the province over the first six months of the current school year.
Following a Parliamentary question asked to the Minister of Education in the Western Cape Mr Donald Grant, the department confirmed that a combined total of 2,474 learners from grades 10 to 12 had dropped out since the start of the schoolyear up until the end of the second term.
‘This is a serious, yet sensitive matter in most cases. It is therefore imperative that parents and learners need to be counseled and interacted with by the department to try and determine the reasons why drop outs occur.
‘This information should then be presented to the standing committee on education in order to find ways to reduce the drop-out rate,’ Mr Lentit says.
‘Despite the fact that the numbers for the drop-out rate is 47% of that of 2010 and 2011 where 5,285 drop outs were recorded for the same time frame, I appeal to all key role players to work together to secure a better future for our children through education. Keeping them in school is the first step to guarantee this.’
Mr Lentit says he will use his oversight role to speak to school governing bodies in his constituency to establish why learners have dropped out of school.
‘At the start of the year 43,111 matriculants were registered for the 2012 school year. By the end of the second term 250 had dropped out. This matter needs serious intervention and close monitoring it is becoming more difficult for our youth to secure qualified employment and job security with the break in their secondary tuition,’ Lentit says.
*See below the question and answer asked by Mr Lentit MPP.
WESTERN CAPE PROVINCIAL LEGISLATURE
FRIDAY, 27 JULY 2012
QUESTION FOR WRITTEN REPLY
2. Mr R B Lentit to ask Mr D A C Grant, Minister of Education:
(a) How many learners have dropped out of grades (i) 10, (ii) 11 and (iii) 12 since the start of the 2012 school year till the end of the second school term and (b) how does these figures differ for (i) 2010 and (ii) 2011?
THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION
2. The daily enrolment tracking report facility was introduced in 2012 as part of a study to understand enrolment trends and drop-out rates within a year. For 2010 and 2011, the Annual School Survey and the promotions enrolments were the only data sources used to determine drop-out rates within a full year. It should be noted that the quarterly attendance record rates cannot be used to determine the drop-out rates. Dropout rates deal with deregistered learners from CEMIS.
The tables below provide a record of the learners that have dropped out:
· For the full years of 2010 and 2011; and
· For the 6 months of 2012, January to June.
The rates for the three grades for 2010 and 2011 correlate approximately with total failures 10,475 and 10,666, respectively. Although no similar enrolment record exists for the first six months of 2010 and 2011, if a parallel comparison can be made, it appears that the drop-outs for the first six months of 2010 and 2011 are more than double the number we have for 2012: the averaged drop-out rate for the first six months of 2010 and 2011 is 5,285 compared to 2,474 in 2012. This means that the 2012 rate is 47% of the 2010 and 2011 rates. If the current drop-out rate is sustained, it can be projected that the ratio will be much lower at the end of the year than in the previous years. However, it might be practical to anticipate an increased drop-out rate in the second half of the year due to learners not coming back after the first semester or the academic year becoming challenging. This matter will be monitored very closely.
Learners in Grades 10 to 12 dropping out: 2010 and 2011 and the first 6 months of 2012.