The matric Maths Paper Two which was leaked in a school in Limpopo, was leaked and circulated via WhatsApp.

This was revealed by the Department of Basic Education today, during an update on the scandal that has hit the matric exams this year.

“I am deeply disappointed by this unfortunate incident which has the potential of tarnishing the credibility of the National Senior Certificate examination. We take this breach very seriously given that over the last few years we have worked very hard to improve the security and all measures relating to the delivery of a clean examination,” Minister of Education, Angie Motshekga said.

The department’s peliminary investigation has revealed that one learner from Giyani High school obtained a rough copy of the Maths Paper Two exam.

“The learner has come forward and made this confession voluntarily and he has made a full disclosure which is extremely helpful in taking the investigation forward,” Motshekga said.

The paper was then forward onto other learners via a WhatsApp group chat. The question paper did not have the features of the final examination paper but the contents and sequence of the questions was exactly the same as the final question paper.

It appears at this stage that the leakage could be limited to selected learners in the school and a few learners from neighbouring schools.

According to Motshekga, the department has made significant progress in her team’s attempt to get to the bottom of this breach.

“In taking this investigation forward so that we can ensure a speedy conclusion and to ensure the integrity of the examination as a whole, I have established a Ministerial Investigation Team that will fully investigate all aspects of this case. This Ministerial Investigation Team will work closely with the provincial colleagues and I have been assured by MEC [of education in Limpopo, Ishmael] Kgetjepe, that his department will support this investigation and will take all possible measures to secure the rest of the examination,” Motshekga said.

The Ministerial Investigation Team will report to the minister in the next six weeks and will work closely with the Hawks and will engage the services of a private investigation company, if the case so warrants.

Policies to be reviewed

Motshekga added that her department is becoming acutely aware of the role of modern technology in the examination process as a system not adequately addressed as a security risk.

“We will obtain the expert advice of our Information Technology Specialists in addressing this matter. This may entail a review of our legislative framework and certain examination practices,” she said.

Public urged to report guilty parties

Motshekga has urged the public to report any instances of people selling or leaking exam papers, by calling the department’s call centre on 0800 202 933.

“It pains me to imagine that among us are one or two individuals that are bent on undoing the good work that has been done over the years, in order to further their own selfish motives. These despicable elements must be identified and brought to book. These kinds of irregularities have the potential of jeopardising the future plans and ambitions of our learners,” she said.

Motshekga concluded by encouraging matric learners to focus on their exams and doing their best.

“To all candidates who are writing the examination, do not be distracted and my appeal to you is to keep focussed. Learners that deviously obtain an unfair advantage over others will be identified through our special measures that we adopt during the marking process and using post examination analytical measures,” she said.