- National Education Policy Act 27 of 1996 [NEPA]
- South African Schools Act 84 of 1996 (SASA 2B-12 to 17) [SASA]
- Approval for the Amendments to the Regulations Pertaining to the National Curriculum Statement Grades R-12 to provide for the listing of French Second Additional Language (GN 40898(no.539), 9 June 2017 [NR 40898-539/2017]
- Determination of minimum outcomes and standards and a national process and procedures for the assessment of learner achievement as stipulated in the policy document, national policy pertaining to the programme and promotion requirements of the national curriculum statement grades R-12 (GN 40898(no.540), 9 June 2017) [NR 40898-540/2017]
- Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statements for the respective subjects (Government Gazette No. 34600 of 12 September 2011) [CAPS]
- National Policy Pertaining to the Programme and Promotion Requirements of the National Curriculum Statement Grades R-12 (Government Gazette No. 34600 of 12 September 2011 as amended by Government Notices No.1496 and 1497 in Government Gazette, No. 40472 dated 2 December 2016) [NPPPR]
- National Protocol for Assessment Grades R-12 (Government Gazette No. 34600 of 12 September 2011) and amended as Government Notice No. 1115 and 1116, Government Gazette No. 36042 of 28 December 2012 [NPA]
- Language in Education Policy 14 July 1997 [NP LANGUAGE]
- Circular 13 of 2017: Repeal of the proviso restricting accounting to learners offering mathematics only [13/2017]
- Circular S11 of 2017: The splitting of the business studies examination question paper from one paper into two papers for Gr 10-12 [S11/2017]
- Circular S12 of 2017: The splitting og the accounting paper from one paper to two papers and the provision of a formula sheet for Gr 10-12 [S12/2017]
- Circular S3 of 2018: Clarification on implementation of the Repeal of the Accounting proviso [S3/2018]
- Circular S3 of 2019: Grade 11 Accounting and Business Studies Examination Guidelines [S3/2019]
National Curriculum Statement (NCS) for Grades R-12: Phases and subjects as listed in the National Policy Pertaining to the Programme and Promotion Requirements (See NPPPR)
Take note of the addition of French as a second additional language. The Curriculum and Assessment Policy (CAPS) documents for French are available on the following Departmental websites: www.education.gov.za, Resources Curriculum, Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS).
- The curriculum is structured in terms of four phases and 13 Grades:
|– Foundation Phase||Grades R – 3|
|– Intermediate Phase||Grades 4 – 6|
|– Senior Phase||Grades 7 – 9|
|– Further Education and Training Phase||Grades 10 – 12|
- Subjects form the basic components of the curriculum for all the phases.
- The subjects can be grouped into eight learning areas: Languages, Mathematics, Life Orientation, Arts & Culture, Natural Sciences, Technology, Social Sciences, Economic and Management Sciences (although not used in an explicit way in the policy documents anymore, the learning areas still reflect the underpinning structure of the NCS which is useful).
- Languages, Mathematics, Mathematical Literacy and Life Orientation are referred to as the Fundamentals.
- School types in terms of the curriculum
SASA in Section 12(3)(a) makes provision for three types of public school:
- Ordinary public schools
- Public schools for learners with special education needs
- Public schools that provide education with a specialised focus on talent, including sport, performing arts or creative arts. A public school distinguishes itself as a focus school (third school type above) by means of its curriculum, e.g. a technology school (focusing on technological skills), and an agricultural school.
- Subject choices
- A learner can from Gr 4 onwards take both language subjects at Home Language Level
- Schools are encouraged to offer three languages in the Intermediate and Senior Phases. However, policy does not allocate time to a third language and schools therefore have to add the time used for such an additional subject to the prescribed teaching time (27.5 hours per week).
- There are no subject choices up to the completion of the Senior Phase except for the level at which the second official language is offered from Gr 4 up to Gr 9.
- The SASA as amended by the Basic Education Laws Amendment Act No 15 of 2011 determines in Section 6B as follows:
“6B. The governing body of a public school must ensure that –
- there is no unfair discrimination in respect of any official languages that are offered as subject options contemplated in section 21(1)(b); and
- the first additional language and any other official language offered, as provided for in the curriculum, are offered on the same level.”
(Please see Chapter 9.1 for the implications of this section).
- In the FET Phase, a learner with the exception of an immigrant learner or learner with barriers to learning, must offer seven subjects:
- An official Language at Home Language Level
- An official Language at least 1st Additional Language Level
- Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy
- Life Orientation
- Three of the other subjects with the following provisos:
- Not more than one language from the same group (isiXhosa, isiZulu, SiSwati and isiNdebele form one group and Sepedi, Sesotho and Setswana the other)
- The same language may not be offered at more than one level
- Mathematics and Mathematical Literacy may not be offered together
- Consumer Studies and Hospitality Studies may not be offered together
- Learners offering Sport and Exercise Science as a subject must offer either Physical Sciences or Life Sciences
- Learners offering Physical Sciences as one of their optional subjects; must offer Mathematics as a compulsory subject (this will probably be phased in from grade 10 in 2017)
- Learners offering Accounting as one of their optional subjects may offer either Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy in grade 10 as from 2018 (DBE Circular 13 of 2017)
- One subject developed and assessed by an accredited body may be offered as one of the three subjects. These subjects are listed in Annexure C of the National Policy Pertaining to the Promotion and Progression Requirements (NPPR). One of the three optional subjects can be replaced with a subject from another assessment body as listed in Annexure C of If this subject is one of the Practical Music Subjects of one of the Music examination bodies it may only be offered as an eighth subject which cannot count as one of the seven subjects for promotion purposes.
- A learner may offer more than the required 7 subjects on condition that the additional subject(s) is (are) offered for all three years (Gr 10-12) and all the internal assessment requirements for the subject(s) are met.
- Learners entering the FET Phase must follow one of the following two pathways, namely an Academic (General) or Technical pathway.
- For the Technical pathway a learner must offer Mathematics or Technical Mathematics(aa) one of the following three technology subjects (specialisation)-
(aaa) Civil Technology (Specialisation)
(bbb) Electrical Technology (Specialisation)
(ccc) Mechanical Technology (Specialisation)
(bb) Engineering Graphics and Design; and
(cc) Physical Sciences or Technical Science.
- A candidate from the Academic (General) pathway may not offer Technical Mathematics
- A candidate from the Academic (General) pathway may not offer Technical Science
- A candidate from the Academic (General) pathway may not offer any one of the following three technology subjects (Specialisation) –
(a) Civil Technology (Specialisation)
(b) Electrical Technology (Specialisation)
(c) Mechanical Technology (Specialisation)
- A candidate from the Technical pathway may not offer Mathematical Literacy
- A candidate from the Technical pathway may not offer both Mathematics and Technical Mathematics
- Changing subjects in Grades 10-12
Policy determines as follows:
- A learner may change a maximum of two subjects in Gr 10, subject to approval of the Principal of the school where the learner is registered. Such change must be done before 30 June of the Grade 10 year.
- A learner may change two subjects in Gr 11, provided this is done before 31 March, subject to the approval of the Principal of the school where the learner is registered.
- In exceptional cases a learner may change one additional subject in Grade 11, provided this is done before 15 December of the Grade 11-year.
- Approval for changing a subject in Gr 12 must be obtained from the Head of the Assessment Body (provincial education department). The following must be furnished:
- A letter of motivation from the learner’s parent or guardian;
- A letter from the Principal, either supportive or not supportive, with reasons;
- A letter from the subject teacher, outlining the programme to be followed to assist the learner in covering those aspects of the curriculum statements for the previous grade that were not covered.
- A learner who changes a subject in Grades 10, 11 or 12 will be exempted from the School-Based Assessment requirements of the subject he or she wants to change for the period before the change was effected, provided that:
- He or she has complied with all the School-Based Assessment requirements of the subject for the period before the change is to be effected; and
- He or she complies with all the remaining School-Based Assessment requirements of the new subject from the date the change was effected.
- The learner, or the parent or guardian of the learner who changes a subject is in Grades 10, 11 or 12 and who encounters learning difficulties due to the subject change may not hold the provincial department responsible for changing a subject.
4.1.3Guidelines for the Development of School Policy on the Curriculum in Terms of the Framework in 4.1.2
- Description of the school’s curriculum
The policy of a school should include a description of the school’s curriculum. This applies to a primary school as well, in spite of the fact that the National Curriculum Statement is the same for all primary schools (same subjects, etc.). The description should include the following:
- The main aims pursued by the school, in line with the school’s vision and mission statements, e.g. to enable all learners to realise their maximum potential.
- The subjects in the respective phases in terms of the NCS
- The reason why certain languages feature as subjects and others not and why at the specific levels.
- Activities and subjects that are not prescribed by national policy must be pointed out and the reasons for their inclusion explained.
- In the case of high schools, the elective subjects must be listed, with an explanation for the selection of subjects (why only certain subjects are offered and not the others). Reference could be made to the needs of the community, the curriculums of neighbouring schools, university admission requirements and labour market requirements.
- A school should categorise itself on the basis of its curriculum
- Focus (technical, agricultural, art & music)
- Specialised (hearing impaired, mildly intellectually handicapped, etc)
- Rules concerning subject choices for Gr 10 – 12
These could include:
- Performance in the relevant learning area in Gr 9, e.g. Mathematics versus Mathematical Literacy
- Subjects that are not allowed to be taken together
- Rules concerning the changing of subjects in Gr 10 – 12
The guidelines as stated in the National Policy Pertaining to the Programme and Promotion Requirements must be re-formulated to read as school policy with procedures and deadline dates clearly stated.
- Accounting grade 10 will have two papers phased in from 2018. (DBE Circular 12: S12/2017)
Paper 1 Consists of Recording, Reporting, Corporate Governance, Interpretation of Financial Information (Financial Accounting integrated with Managing resources)
Paper 2 Consists of Manufacturing, Budgeting/Forecasting & Internal Auditing and Control (Managerial Accounting integrated with Managing resources)
- Grade 11 Accounting Examination Guidelines (Gr11 ACC)
- Business Studies grade 10 will have two papers phased in from 2018. (DBE Circular 11: S11/2017)
Paper 1 Consists of Business Environments and Business Operations
Paper 2 Consists of Business Ventures and Business Roles
- Grade 11 Business Studies Examination Guidelines (Gr11 Buss)