The performance of South African learners in reading comprehension is extremely poor. The Progress in International Literacy and Reading Study (2016) highlighted that by the end of grade 4, 78% of learners cannot read for meaning. In this context, what can administrations, school leaders and managers do to promote improvements in literacy? This policy brief presents findings from a two-year mixed methods project that aimed to identify leadership and management practices that may be linked to higher literacy outcomes in township and rural schools. The Leadership for Literacy study highlights the need to refocus the role of school leaders and managers on enhancing the knowledge and pedagogical skills of teachers through effective human resource management and support.
Learner flows through schools: Using high quality administrative data to understand education system performance
The report analyses school flows, repetition, and dropout using a novel analysis of school-based assessments, and how well these predict future performance and learner flows. An important finding is that the high repetition and dropout rates in high schools imply an internal efficiency rate of only 49% (measured in terms of the years of enrolment in high school for every matric pass).
How basic education has improved in the Western Cape in the past six years
Repetition is a serious problem in South Africa, and the Western Cape is no exception. In any given year between 2007 and 2019, repetition has ranged between 72,000 and 100,000, with notable enrolment bulges in grades 1, 4, 9 and 10. An important consequence of repetition—when not cancelled by dropout—is an increase in the proportion of children who are older than what would be considered appropriate for a particular grade. For example, at least a third of grade 12 learners in 2019 were overage.
Learner flow through patterns in the Western Cape using CEMIS datasets from 2007 to 2019: A longitudinal cohort analysis
Stellenbosch Working Paper Series No. WP01/2021
Publication date: February 2021