Happy days for class of 2020

Fish Hoek High School’s top pupil, Grace Steward, high fives principal Gavin Fish the Covid way.

Despite a difficult year for matrics countrywide, the class of 2020 has achieved a pass rate of 76.2%, a drop of 5.1% from 2019’s 81.3%.

The Western Cape pass rate was 79.9% and the province narrowly missed out on an 80% pass rate for the first time since 2010.

However, far south high schools have a reason to celebrate. Fish Hoek High School’s pass rate increased from 98.3% in 2019 to 99.5% in 2020 while Masiphumelele High School’s pass rate increased from 66.3% in 2019 to 81.2% for 2020. Muizenberg High School’s pass rate increased from 87.5% in 2019 to 94.2% in 2020 while Simon’s Town School had an increase from 87.7% in 2019 to 90.4% in 2020. Ocean View High School had a drop of 14.9% from 77.3% in 2019 to 62.4% in 2020.

There was a buzzing atmosphere at Fish Hoek High School as pupils queued outside the school hall to get their results. In the days before Covid-19 they would have gone indoors for the results. There were shrieks of happiness from some and others danced with certificates in hand.

Fish Hoek High School’s Duncan MacKenzie making sure pupils sanitise and keep an appropriate distance while queueing for their results.

Principal Gavin Fish said he was puffed with pride.

“I have a sense of enormous relief and deep appreciation swirling around inside of myself,” he said.

The class of 2020, he said, had produced 33 A aggregates, of which six were 90% and above, and 89% of the matrics scored passes good enough to get them into university.

Mr Fish said he was grateful to staff, non-academic staff and parents who all contributed to the success of 2020.

“I am grateful for the endless guidance from staff who tirelessly adjusted to online learning, caught up on academic deficits, cheered their pupils on, managed their own financial losses and, in a number of instances, managed their own children’s learning.

“I believe that last year’s losses, coupled with these results, have birthed resilience and gritty determination,” he said.

Fish Hoek High School class of 2020 pupils collecting their National Senior Certificate (NSC) results.

Masiphumelele High School principal Nelson Mafrika said he was very proud of the class of 2020.

He said he had expected an increase in the results compared to 2019 as the matrics had worked hard despite the difficult circumstances caused by Covid-19.

“My staff should also be thanked for their contribution as they are always willing to go the extra mile and it shows in this year’s results,” he said.

Acting deputy principal for Simon’s Town School, Lucresia Harrison, said she was proud of what pupils and teachers had achieved despite the impact of Covid-19.

“Well done to all our matrics”.

Despite several attempts to contact Ocean View High School principal Keith Klein and Muizenberg High School principal Leoni Jacobsen for comment, they could not be reached at the time of going to print.

Western Cape Education Department head Brian Schreuder said the department was pleased that the impact of Covid-19 had not been more severe.

The Western Cape pass rate of 79.9%, he said, had declined by 2.4%, which was the lowest decline in the country. Despite that, the province had recorded its highest ever Bachelor pass rate of 43.8%.

He said 213 schools in the province had improved their results from 2019.