Data from the Department of Basic Education has debunked the oft-repeated myth that black South Africans thirst after education.
Dropout rates in South African schools between grade 10 and grade 12 have more than doubled since 1995.
Some 22% of the grade 10 class of 1995 did not go on to sit their matric exam two years later.
By 2012 this dropout rate had increased to 50%. Data from the Department demonstrates that the grade 10 cohort of 1995 consisted of 719 190 pupils, 78% of whom became matric candidates in 1997.
By comparison, the grade 10 class of 2010 consisted of 1 006 381 pupils, with only 51% going on to become matric candidates in 2012.
Attrition rates at school are most pronounced in grades 10, 11, and 12 (also known as the further education and training band), with the majority of pupils who drop out of school never returning to
complete their education.
Census data from Statistics South Africa reveals that the proportion of young people attending an educational institution remains steady at approximately 95% for those aged 7 to 15 but declines to 90% and 74% for those aged between 16 and 18 respectively. – SAIRR