Designed by Education MEC Barbara Creecy, the move has massive implications for pupils, teachers and parents.
In terms of the plan:
- Grade 3, 6 and 9 pupils will write a standardised national test that will determine their knowledge of numeracy and literacy so that areas of weakness can be identified earlier and rectified before Grade 12
- All schools will approach the curriculum standardised fashion, covering the same areas at the same time.
- 5000 teachers will be trained throughout the year in the curriculum
- Parents will have to attend induction classes at the start of the school year. Schools reopen January 12, and the induction programme will be held on January 8 and 9.
Creey said this was to get parents to take more responsibility for their children's education and would serve to inform them about the year ahead, what was expected of them as their children.
Speaking at a special briefing of editors, Creecy painted a bleak picture of the state of education in the province. According to the latest figures only 30 percent of grade 3s are literate and just over 40 percent pass maths, while slightly more than 50 percent are literate.
At high school level, about 50 percent of children can't read or write, so it is difficult for the department to get the matric results up.