The national matric pass rate dropped from 76% in 2014 to 71% for the class of 2015. And so it was with nerves and excitement that IkamvaYouth learners, volunteers, parents, staff and donors made their way to the organisation’s branches in ten townships across five provinces last week. However, with relief and celebration, the figures confirm that the collective efforts have paid off, and the Ikamvanites have shown that with hard work, peer support and committed volunteer tutors and mentors, the odds can be impressively overcome.

 

Highlights of Matric 2015

Although 87% of Ikamvanites attend no-fee schools in townships, they managed to succeed against the odds and consistently beat the national average matric results:

  • 80% of Ikamvanites passed the matric exam compared to 71% nationally.
  • 69% of Ikamvanites are eligible for tertiary study (achieving either bachelor or diploma passes) compared to 55% nationally
  • 40% of Ikamvanites qualified to study for a bachelor’s degree at university compared to 26% nationally.

Ikamvanites choose to take more difficult subjects & do better than average:

  • While nationally, only 41% of matrics take mathematics and of those only 49% pass; among Ikamvanites 51% take mathematics and 58% pass.
  • While nationally, only 30% of matrics take physical science and of those only 59% pass; among Ikamvanites 39% take Physical Science and 67% pass.

Many learners achieved exceptional results. Chumisa Yaphi from Makhaza achieved 6 distinctions, and has been awarded a scholarship to study at UCT. She is weighing up her options at different institutions, and wants to study either Geology or Pharmacy. Read more about her achievement in the Q&A  we did with her.

Most of the learners who did not manage to pass this year are eligible for supplementary exams (61%), and so their journey towards a matric pass is not yet over. They will be tutored at IkamvaYouth branches until they write these exams.

The organisation is particularly proud of branch performance in the notoriously poor-performing regions in Kwa-Zulu Natal and the Eastern Cape. The Umlazi branch is celebrating an 87% pass, with 74% eligible for tertiary (39% bachelor and 35% diploma), while the Chesterville branch achieved an 89% pass (27% bachelor and 50% diploma).

Ntombikayise Mjaja, a parent at the Umlazi branch, thanked IkamvaYouth’s donors, volunteers and staff for their initiative, saying “our children are achieving because of this work; we have seen the improvements, and we are so proud of them”.

Bongane Chavane, who joined the Umlazi branch in grade 10 when he was failing Maths and Life Sciences, said that, “the matric exams were of high standard, but with IkamvaYouth in my corner I managed to get a Bachelor Pass that I am very proud of. Today I am very proud to have passed Maths with 70% and Life Science with 72%. IkamvaYouth is a programme aiming at helping pupils with their future, and this year I am going to study Geological Science at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and also give back to this programme by becoming a tutor.

Despite challenges including lacking access to electricity, water and sanitation, as well as Maths and Physics teachers, the Joza branch just outside of Grahamstown achieved an 81% pass (33% bachelor and 24% diploma). Khonaye Mpofana joined IkamvaYouth when he was in grade 11, as he had poor results in grade 10, and was unsure about his post-school career options. He is now celebrating being one of the top matric achievers at his school, and is going on to study Psychology at Rhodes university.

Here’s a graph comparing Ikamvanites bachelor passes against the national averages in the Eastern Cape:

Learners from the class of 2015 are going on to study a range of important fields that will equip them with the skills they need to build South Africa, including medicine, engineering, social work, and Information Technology. In addition, they are also committed to paying forward the support they received; and many of them are returning to volunteer as tutors, and uplift more learners as they rise.

IkamvaYouth has maintained a matric pass rate of between 80 and 100% each year since 2005, and true credit for these results must go to the learners, volunteers, the staff, partner organisations and donors.

“IkamvaYouth would like to express particular thanks to our remarkable volunteers and IkamvaYouth’s five largest donors in 2015: Amalgamated Beverage Industries, Omidyar Network, Capitec Bank, Montpelier Foundation and ELMA Foundation. Without these and all of the other wonderful donors, these results would not be possible. We appreciate your support hugely and are looking forward to continuing to working with you in the years to come,” says chairperson Leigh Meinert.

For more information on IkamvaYouth, please see our 2014 Annual Report. If you would like to donate to IkamvaYouth, please do so via Given Gain or Global Giving or contact: alex@ikamvayouth.org.

 

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