FIRST matric results 2021 ieb pass rate

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Education Department partners with SAPS to retrieve matric tablets

Matric learners in the Eastern Cape are in hot water for not returning their school tablets last year. SAPS has been called in to assist.

FIRST matric results 2021 ieb pass rate

Image via: Adobe Stock

The Eastern Cape Department of Education has made it clear, matric learners who has not returned their tablets from last year are breaking the law.

Around 55 000 tablets distributed to matric learners in 2020 has still not been returned to their schools. Acting Head of Department Ray Tywakadi said on Thursday the tablets belonged to the respective schools and not to matric learners.

“We are not giving tablets to children; we are giving tablets to schools,” he said.


Tywakadi spoke at the Chris Hani East District’s Education Summit on Thursday.

“When they finish Grade 12, they leave the tablets behind. And that’s where the biggest mishap was between schools and learners. Many schools failed to recoup the tablets when they wrote their last paper.”

He added that schools received a guideline and memo on how to distribute the tablets.

“People raised the issue that it’s expensive for parents to pay back this money, so what we have done is to partner with the South African Police Service (SAPS) on this. So, any learner who is keeping a tablet today is in conflict with the law.”


He said the departments plan was to assist 250 000 matric learners over a three year period.

“Over a period of three years we should be able to assist 250 000 learners to access info using the tablet, that was out bigger plan. So many of them are now giving us a problem in giving it back.”

Tywakadi made it clear if outstanding devices are not returned there will be consequences.

“So, we’ve tried to make it very clear, is if we recoup that tablet using extra-ordinary measures you are criminally liable. They are meant to assist the matric class of 2021, it’s a three-year program. As you know the lifespan of any gadget can never be in excess of three years,” he said.

READ: Matrics ‘threatened with charges’ over irregular R538m tablet contract