Court rules South Africa’s matric marks should be published publicly

The North Gauteng High Court has ruled that the Department of Basic Education should continue to publish the matric results publicly on media platforms and newspapers.

The ruling comes after the Department of Basic Education said in an 11 January statement that matric exam results will no longer be published on media platforms, in line with the recently introduced Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA).

“In order to comply with the provisions of the POPIA, the usual practice of publishing the National Senior Certificate (NSC) results on public platforms (media platforms) will not occur for 2021,” it said.

“As was also the practice in previous years, all learners will be required to obtain their statement of results from the schools they attended. In this way, every learner’s personal information with regards to the outcome of their National Senior Certificate exam will be protected.”

The decision was challenged by civil society group AfriForum, Maroela Media and Anlé Spies (a 2021 matriculant) who argued that matric students who do not live close to their respective schools would be prejudiced by the decision.

Spies, who sat her exams in Pretoria but lives in Gqeberha, argued that it is critically important that she receive her results as quickly as possible so that she can prepare for the start of her university career. She said that there are several learners who moved or relocated to addresses far away from the schools where they sat their matric exams.

The Department of Basic Education has previously said that it will not oppose the urgent application and will abide by the decision of the court.


Read: Matric results will not be published publicly in South Africa – what you should know

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Court rules South Africa’s matric marks should be published publicly