Only four out of 10 pupils in South Africa demonstrated basic math and science knowledge in 2019, according to the latest Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS)

Presenting the results of the TIMSS on Tuesday, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga noted that this was an improvement from one in 10 pupils in 2003.

“The mathematics and science ability levels increased from 11% of learners demonstrating that they had acquired basic math and science knowledge in 2003, to 41% of mathematics learners and 36% of science learners demonstrating this ability in 2019,” said Motshekga.

From 2003 to 2019, South Africa improved by 104 points for mathematics and 102 points for science.

TIMSS, released every four years, surveyed pupils in 64 countries. In South Africa, 519 schools and 20 829 pupils participated. The survey focused on Grade 5 and 9 pupils.

Subscribe to our Free Daily All4Women Newsletter to enter

TIMSS was the only study that measured changes in education quality over time and was important as it gave the education department an international comparative analysis of the math and science levels in the country.

“Most importantly, the TIMSS Study and others help us to develop evidence-based remedial policies and strategies. The TIMSS Survey also shows us what works and what doesn’t, here at home and across forty-six countries around the world,” said Motshekga.

SA received an average scale score of 374 for Grade 5 math and 324 for science, while Grade 9s scored 389 in math and 370 in science.

She said that while the country had recorded significant progress, it was still far behind its peers and competitors.

“Interestingly, the highest achievement increases are from the lowest performers. This means that the lowest-achieving provinces have improved the most over the long-term period.”

Motshekga said it was too early to “pop the proverbial champagne”.

“Researchers confirm that home conditions continue to be unequal, and some homes are still not conducive to learning activities. They say learners from homes lacking the basic amenities, such as running tap water and flush toilets, have the lowest educational outcomes,” she said.

SA’s Covid-19 recovery rate now 82%

SA’s Covid-19 recovery rate now 82%

On Tuesday, the Department of Health reported that the number of positive cases was currently standing at 592 144, with 2 258 new cases registered.

Traditional healer jailed for repeatedly raping client

Jayde Panayiotou’s killer handed 2nd life term for murder of elderly woman

He and his co-accused killed Webber four months after he, Jayde’s husband, Chris Panayiotou, and Zolani Sibeko conspired and killed the schoolteacher.

Judge gavel in court. Library with lot of books in background

“I was framed” claims dad accused of killing his 4 children

He told the court he believed a local businessman might be behind the murders because of a row over a business transaction.

weather forecast background - variety weather conditions, bright sun and blue sky; dark stormy sky with lightnings

SA Weather: Wet weekend ahead for some

According to the South African Weather Service, a Yellow (Level 2) Disruptive Rain warning has been issued over the southern parts of KZN and the eastern parts of the Eastern Cape.

Township cinema

Cape Town township gets a pop-up cinema

With his love of movies and experience from working at a cinema, 25-year-old Buhle Sithela has opened his own cinema in Harare, Khayelitsha.