Earlier this year, several schools in Gauteng and Kwazulu-Natal lodged a complaint with the Department of Education to investigate the decline of Business Studies 2018 matric exam results.
According to IOL News, the reason for the decline is a Business Studies textbook from Mind the Gap, that allegedly is not part of the prescribed syllabus for the subject and was only distributed to under-performing schools.
IOL News further states that principals of the affected schools claimed the textbook was not freely available to all pupils, and this resulted in students attending schools that pay fees being compromised as they had no idea that the Department intended to use it in the examination.
“By comparing the examination paper and the memorandum, it was a copy and paste of Mind the Gap,” said the principal of Oak Ridge College in Durban North, Darly Franks.
The Department has denied the textbook had prejudice against pupils of schools which had no access to it, stating that the book was only made freely available to no-fee paying schools, but there was nothing stopping other schools from accessing it.
“The book is a learner support material and it was never a secret book. We received such complaints and we have discussed the matter, but there are people who are still threatening to take the department to court. We have no intention of discussing this issue in the media as we have addressed it with the relevant people who had a problem with it,” added spokesperson of the Department, Elijah Mhlanga.
At this stage there does not appear to be any logical conclusion in sight, as schools and the Department go back and forth. Meanwhile students still sit with their poor exam results and no explanation as to why.