This was announced by Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola at the Leeuwkop Correctional Centre on Thursday, accompanied by Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi.
Lamola congratulated the convicts for their achievements despite their challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic since March last year.
“We are pleased that our results improved even during the unprecedented year. We congratulate our learners and teachers for their resilience. We equally extend our gratitude to the Department of Basic Education for their continued support and assistance.”
• A total of five of the correctional schools achieved a 100% pass rate.
• 76 distinctions were achieved in the 2020 academic year.
• There were 78 bachelors degree passes. pic.twitter.com/QrZPIjLbAj
— Minister of Justice and Correctional Services ???????? (@RonaldLamola) February 25, 2021
He said the department was hard at work ensuring learners behind bars were able to overcome barriers and focus on rehabilitating themselves.
“The barriers include a lack of training and learning, gangsterism, idleness and denial of life-changing opportunities. While some of these challenges are still prevalent in our centres, we strive to release people from our centres who will contribute positively to their communities.”
Inmates matrics produced a total of 76 distinctions and 78 bachelors passes, which is a minimum requirement for admission to a bachelors degree.
“This is higher than the national average of 76.2%, it is also higher than the highest provincial percentage of 85.1% attained by the Free State,” Lamola said.
For the 2020 academic year, a total of 160 inmates wrote their matric exams. An 86.2% pass rate was achieved by full-time learners. When combined with part-time learners, the pass rate stands at 81.3%.
This, according to Lamola, is the highest inmate pass rate ever.