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National & Provincial
Dec 28 2012 11:48PM
IEB Matric 2012 available after midnight on Sat., 29 Dec. 12
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IEE Press Release:

IEB National Senior Certificate 2012 not available until 00h00am (midnight) on Saturday 29 December 2012: 

8959 full time and 534 part time candidates from 183 schools across the country wrote the Independent Examinations Board (IEB) National Senior Certificate examinations in 2012. 

This year saw an increase of an additional 1212 learners that wrote the IEB examination compared with 2011. This increase came from nine new institutions that have joined the IEB as well as from increases in learner numbers at existing schools.

The 2012 pass rate is 98.20%, comparable to last year’s pass rate of 98.15%. All candidates that passed achieved a pass that is good enough to enter tertiary study at one of the three levels. 83.6% of the cohort achieved entry to degree study and 12.96% qualified for entry to diploma study. 1.64% achieved entry for study at the Higher Certificate level.

The IEB prides itself on running examinations of the highest professional standards. The examining panels consist of top educationalists who keep abreast of best practice locally and internationally. Marking is of the highest quality and accuracy. The tight control of operations, the strict adherence to deadlines, and the meticulous attention to detail ensure that candidates receive the best possible attention. UMALUSI, the Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training, once again approved all the IEB’s assessment procedures.

“Success at Grade 12 is the culmination of many years’ hard work by not only the candidates but also their teachers, parents and the broader circle of their support structures – family members and friends. It is this broader circle of support that ensures that a child is not only academically ready to enter the world after schooling, but is also socially and ethically prepared to take up his or her rightful place as a constructive citizen of our country, “ says Anne Oberholzer, CEO of the Independent Examinations Board.

“In line with international trends, the IEB continues to stress alternative assessment and the ability to apply knowledge and skills to new contexts. The process of how knowledge is constructed is of key relevance to students who pursue in-depth study at a tertiary level.

“The number of schools whose learners have included a substantial ‘research task’ in the school-based assessment has increased from 21 schools in 2011 to 80 in 2012. This initiative from the IEB enables schools to expose learners to the process of research, making them aware of the importance of an appropriate research methodology. More importantly for the information age in which we are living, learners are encouraged to debate important ethical aspects of research. Not only do they leave with a very clear understanding of the problem of plagiarism and the consequences of it in tertiary study, they also come to an understanding of how mankind broadens its understanding of different phenomena,” explains Anne.

Students choose their own areas of research and often tackle issues of social and global importance, investigating key issues and evaluating a range of viewpoints, before reaching their own conclusions. While the focus of the study may be located within one discipline area, the implications of the investigation are often evident across a range of disciplines. Through this process, students come to a realisation of the inter-relatedness of knowledge.

Also being released today are the results of learners from both state and independent schools who participated in the Advanced Programme (AP) courses offered by the IEB. These two courses in Mathematics and English have been benchmarked as equivalent in demand to UK A-levels and provide talented learners with an opportunity to explore at an in-depth level the areas in which they have a specific talent or interest. The IEB sees it as part of its mission to provide South African learners with the opportunity to keep abreast of global standards and test themselves against their international counterparts.

1568 candidates wrote AP Mathematics with a pass rate of 84%. AP English was assessed for the first time this year after the 2011 pilot project. 502 candidates wrote AP English and achieved a pass rate of 97%.
“A key purpose of schooling is to prepare our young people to take up their place in adult society, be it at an institution of further learning or be it in the workplace. Whatever they do it is critical that they are trainable. The change from being a young person at school and a successful participant in our country’s economy extends far beyond passing a Mathematics or History examination. A trainable youngster is one who has developed the maturity to understand that their educational destiny rests in their own hands, who understands that true learning goes beyond preparing for an examination and developing the cognitive skills required to do a job of work. It requires the ability to take responsibility for one’s behaviour, to prioritise one’s time to focus on what is needed at the time and to be able to resist the temptations to put one’s own pleasure ahead of the requirements of one’s job or one’s study demands,” says Anne.

“In the case of learners who want to be successful at university, it is essential that they are properly prepared at school both in terms of their cognitive base as well as the ‘soft’ skills which are critical for tertiary study. Learners do not only need to be responsible and be able to prioritise competing pressures when they get to university; they also need to be able to plan their programme of study, to persevere and not fall apart when challenged with difficult concepts or even failure, and to cope when having to manage what may seem to be an inordinate amount of work. Most importantly they need to know how to study independently, how to cope with situations that may be unfamiliar and face up to difficulties without the nurturing support of persistent teachers,” concludes Anne.

The majority of IEB schools are affiliated to one of a number of recognised associations of independent schools. Such affiliation ensures that these schools have oversight not only from the school’s board of governance but also the relevant association. The associations to which IEB schools are affiliated include the Independent Schools Association of South Africa (ISASA), the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), the Catholic Institute of Education (CIE) and the South African Board of Jewish Education (SABJE). A number of schools that write the IEB NSC examination are also part of various groups – these include the Ashton Colleges, the Centurus Colleges, the Curro schools and the REDDAM House schools.

The affiliation of a school to a recognised association or to group of schools provides parents with the reassurance that the school is quality assured by a parent organisation and is required to abide by a specified code of conduct which includes ethical governance practices and the provision of quality education. The IEB advises parents to enquire about and be assured of an independent school’s affiliations before enrolling their children at the school.  

Background for media:

The IEB has 8959 full time and 534 part time candidates in 2012, registered at IEB affiliated schools across the country as follows:

Province                     Number of schools               Number of learners 

Eastern Cape                          12                                            516

Free State                                 4                                            110

Gauteng                                  90                                            5246

KwaZulu-Natal                        31                                            1759

Limpopo                                  12                                            316

Mpumalanga                             4                                            283

Northern Cape                          2                                               35

North West                                3                                            144

Western Cape                         13                                            735


The remaining 349 candidates attend 12 independent schools in Namibia, Swaziland and Mozambique.  The Gauteng numbers include learners registered with two distance learning institutions which have their head offices in Gauteng.  These institutions have both full time and part time learners who live in areas across the country.  They are registered with the distance learning institution which manages their lesson delivery as well as the assessment requirements and in Grade 12 these adhere strictly to the NSC requirements and are moderated and verified by the IEB. 

About the IEB

The IEB is an independent assessment agency separate from State and Provincial examination boards operating within the constraints of national legislation and provisions of the national quality assurance body, Umalusi.  Umalusi has granted the IEB accreditation for the assessment of the National Senior Certificate. The IEB offers examinations for client schools at the Grade 12 level, in line with national policy, based on the National Curriculum Statements and using various forms of assessment, including final summative examination and continuous assessment - i.e. orals, practicals and portfolios.   The School Section acts in accordance with Umalusi prescriptions and the provisions of Higher Education, using professional educationalists who are practising teachers in various subject disciplines. These teachers are active members of IEB Subject User Groups which engage with the curriculum and make recommendations on assessment practice based on real school experience.


Issued by:      Teresa Settas

                        Teresa Settas Communications

                        082 653 9935 or 083 789 7839 or

On behalf of:  Anne Oberholzer


                        082 498 4537 or

Date:               28 December 2012

Contact details for media interviews in the following languages:

·         English:        Anne Oberholzer - 0824984537

·         Afrikaans:     Ria Pieterse - 0825630520

·         Sepedi, Sesotho, Setswana:  Vicky Masasanya - 0845340630

·         IsiZulu, IsiXhosa, Siswati, Ndebele:  Themba Ntsizwane - 073 490 9294


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