Gauteng Education promises generators to prevent load shedding from disrupting matric exams

Parijat Chauhan

Parijat Chauhan

Nearly 200 000 matriculants will sit for NSC examinations in the province.

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Matric pupils at Sekano-Ntoane Secondary School in Soweto prepare to sit for their first matric exam on 5 November 2020. The Gauteng Department of Education says it is prepared in the event of a power-supply disruption during this year’s National Senior Certificate (NSC) exams.

A total of 194 611 full-time and part-time matric pupils will write their final exams between 31 October and 7 December across 1 018 examination centres in the province.

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But with the country currently experiencing constant blackouts due to load shedding, the provincial department has promised to provide an alternative electricity supply.

‘Back-up power’

Speaking during a media briefing in Etwatwa – Ekurhuleni, on Monday, Education MEC Matome Chiloane revealed that the department has already communicated with Eskom about its concerns.

“As the department, we have already engaged with Eskom [and] City Power in Johannesburg to request them that schools in certain areas have no downtime in case of load shedding,” he said.

Chiloane also indicated that the department has conducted an audit of computer applications technology (CAT) and information technology (IT) laboratories.

Paper leaks

Meanwhile, Chiloane assured the public that there would be no transgressions or leaks relating to question papers. According to the MEC, the centres, printing and storage points have been audited to ensure the integrity of the exams is protected.

“We can confidently say this year there will be no leakage. I can assure you of that part. We have appointed service providers to assist to augment our security at districts, and we have armed escorts that will be guiding our exam papers.

“We’ve got response teams and we’ve also set up surveillance (CCTV cameras) in all our venues to ensure that everything is tight,” the MEC said. In 2020, Mathematics paper 2 and Physical Sciences paper 2 were leaked to pupils hours before being written.


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