SA battles in schools test

SA battles in schools test

From pre-primary to bullying, negatives weigh against bright futures for pupils

The number of books at home, whether there is a flush toilet, if they are victims of bullying and the kind of pre-school they attend could all contribute to Johnny or Sipho growing up to become a mathematics boffin or a science dud.

The results of the 2015 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study, released yesterday, suggest the millions being pumped into free childhood development programmes in South Africa are not yielding the expected results.

In this year’s medium-term budget speech, R663-million was allocated over the next three years to increase the programme allowing more young children to access pre-school education.

And it is badly needed, the trends report – released in Pretoria by the Human Sciences Research Council and the Department of Basic Education – showed, as this was an area of considerable concern.

The study compares the outcomes in tests of Grade 5 and Grade 9 pupils.