NOT all pupils in Mzansi automatically progress to the next grade after the final exams. Some will fail and will have to repeat the grade or subject.
Cindy Glass, director and co-founder of the Step Up Education Centres, said while it was hard for pupils or parents to accept when their children didn’t progress to the next grade, repeating a grade shouldn’t be regarded as a failure.
She said all children were not the same. “Some learn faster than others, some grab concepts quicker than others, and some would have to do the lesson more than once before mastering it.
“Forcing a child, who is not ready, into the next grade could have a significantly negative impact on the child’s self-esteem and, worse, it could slow the learning process or even stop it altogether as the child’s struggles worsen with the pressures of the new grade!”
She said the principles of learning any new skill was the same, whether a child learns how to swim, read or write.
Here are some advice and tips:
Repeating a grade is NOT a failure
It is an opportunity for a struggling child to master the skills he or she needs in the time he or she needs. Your approach to a child repeating the grade will determine your child’s reaction towards it!
Discuss all options
Speak to the teachers before making a final decision. Have an open mind – remember this is about what is best for your child.
Check the level of competency
See how he or she is doing in the current grade. If your child is struggling, they most likely will struggle even more in the next grade.
Age and physical development matters
A child who is taller or older than the classmates may feel too embarrassed for a repeat to be of any help!
Make a list of the pros and cons
What is best for your child? What are the long-term benefits or harms? Take your time and do what you feel is best. Remember, how you react is how your child will respond.