News clipping – iol online – 26 September 2011

“Stop publishing matric results”

Matric results were a “private matter” and publishing them in newspapers put too much pressure on Grade 12 pupils, some of whom committed suicide, says the Young Communist League, which wants the practice to stop.

“Why publish matric results? It’s a private matter. Why must we embarrass thousands, millions of young South Africans so they can become the laughing stock in townships: ‘So and so didn’t make it into the newspaper’?” league national secretary Buti Manamela asked on Sunday.

“This thing of results published in newspapers has to come to an end,” he said. If there was a need to publish the results, then that should be done using student or identity numbers – not their names.”

Speaking after the league’s national committee’s three-day meeting, Manamela said there had been cases when pupils did not find their names among those published in newspapers and committed suicide, thinking they had failed – when their results were simply among those outstanding. He said he had been in that position, where although his name was not published, he had passed his matric.

The league said it was time education became “fashionable” and for real role models, such as young engineers, scientists and those who used their entrepreneurial skills to develop themselves and others, to be celebrated. Its message was “work hard, make sure you pass matric but even if you don’t pass that doesn’t mean you have failed in life”.

There was too much focus on millionaire celebrities, some of whom did not even finish primary school, said Manamela.

Too much attention was also being paid to tenderpreneurs, who contributed nothing towards creating skills or employment.

“There in Limpopo, children even before they learn to say ‘baba (father)’, ‘mama’, they first learn ‘tender’,” Manamela quipped.

By: Marianne Merten