Umalusi calls for action against invigilators implicated in 2022 matric exams irregularities

16 January 2023 - 19:05
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The basic education department is required to block the results of candidates implicated in irregularities pending the outcome of the DBE investigations and verification by Umalusi.
The basic education department is required to block the results of candidates implicated in irregularities pending the outcome of the DBE investigations and verification by Umalusi.
Image: Supplied

Education quality assurance body Umalusi has requested the basic education department (DBE) and the higher education and training department (DHET) to report on steps taken against officials implicated in irregularities in the 2022 matric exams.

Briefing media on Monday, Umalusi CEO Dr Mafu Rakometsi said there were two categories of irregularities in the exams.

On possible assistance of candidates, he said it was no longer an issue as it has mostly been resolved and the results of the implicated pupils would be released. However, there were outstanding irregularities in some provinces which were yet to be resolved.

These included two cases  in the Eastern Cape (four candidates), four in KwaZulu-Natal (600 candidates) and two in the North West (two candidates).

“In instances where we have group copying [with] learners being assisted by invigilators, we have requested the DBE and DHET to submit a report on action taken against officials implicated in irregularities.”

In most cases it seemed the focus was on candidates, but there were also invigilators involved.

“They are teachers. We want to see action taken in that regard,” said Rakometsi.

Group copying was reported in five exam centres in the Eastern Cape with 52 pupils involved, one in the Free State where 14 were involved, two in Gauteng with six involved and two centres in North West with nine pupils involved.

“In KwaZulu-Natal [there are] two centres [with] 118 learners involved. Mpumalanga, 58 centres involved in that WhatsApp group that has been spoken about in the media — the number of candidates involved is about 1,289.

“I can go on, the list is long. There will be cellphone issues and at the time the investigation is conducted the learner is not available to account for his conduct,” he said.

Umalusi chairperson Prof Yunus Ballim said the National Senior Certificate (NSC) exam is offered by three assessment bodies — the private South African Comprehensive Assessment Institute (SACAI) accredited by Umalusi, the Independent Examinations Board (IEB) and the DBE. The SACAI administered the exams for 4,951 candidates in 2022

The IEB had 13,536 candidates at 262 exam centres. It presented 61 subjects for standardisation by Umalusi.

The “raw” marks were accepted in 47 subjects (77%), mainly upward adjustments were effected in 10 subjects (16.4%) and mainly downward adjustments were made in four subjects (6.6%).

The DBE exams were administered for 921,879 candidates. of which 16,719 were part-time.

There were 6,907 exam centres and 191 marking centres around the country.

The DBE presented 66 subjects to Umalusi's Assessment Standards Committee (ASC). The “raw” marks were accepted for 47 subjects (71.2%), mainly upward adjustments were made in 16 subjects (24.2%), and mainly downward adjustments were effected in three subjects (4.5%).

The Umalusi executive committee concluded that the exams were administered largely in accordance with the regulations pertaining to the conduct, administration and management of the NSC exams, said Ballim.

The irregularities identified during the writing and marking of the exams were not systemic and did not compromise the credibility and integrity of the DBE exams.

“The executive committee of council therefore approves the release of the DBE November 2022 NSC exams results,” he said.

 TimesLIVE

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