Second Chance Matric Support Programme

  • joub
  • Feb 23, 2024

second chance matric

Second Chance Matric Support Programme: Empowering Learners for a Brighter Future


Education is a fundamental human right and a key to unlocking opportunities for a better life. However, various factors, such as financial constraints, family circumstances, or personal challenges, can hinder individuals from completing their secondary education. Recognizing the importance of providing a second chance for those who were unable to complete their matriculation, the South African government introduced the Second Chance Matric Support Programme (SCMSP). This comprehensive program aims to empower learners with the necessary skills, knowledge, and support to successfully obtain their National Senior Certificate (NSC).

Background and Objectives

The SCMSP was established in 2011 as part of the government’s broader strategy to improve access to quality education and reduce the high dropout rate in South Africa. The program is designed to provide learners who have dropped out of school or failed to obtain their matric certificate with a second opportunity to complete their secondary education. The key objectives of the SCMSP include:

  1. Increasing Access to Education: Expanding access to education for individuals who were unable to complete their matriculation due to various circumstances.
  2. Improving Matriculation Success Rates: Enhancing the success rate of learners in obtaining their NSC by providing targeted support and resources.
  3. Promoting Lifelong Learning: Encouraging lifelong learning and empowering individuals to pursue further education or training opportunities.
  4. Reducing Unemployment and Poverty: Equipping learners with the skills and qualifications necessary to secure employment and contribute to the economy.

Program Structure and Implementation

The SCMSP is implemented through a collaborative effort between the Department of Basic Education (DBE), provincial education departments, and accredited learning centers. The program is structured to provide learners with a flexible and supportive learning environment that caters to their individual needs and circumstances.

  1. Learner Support: Learners enrolled in the SCMSP receive comprehensive support, including academic tutoring, counseling, and life skills training. This holistic approach aims to address the various challenges that learners may face, both inside and outside the classroom.
  2. Curriculum and Assessment: The SCMSP curriculum is aligned with the National Curriculum Statement (NCS) and covers a range of subjects, including English, Mathematics, Physical Science, Life Science, and Social Sciences. Learners are assessed continuously throughout the program to monitor their progress and identify areas where additional support is needed.
  3. Flexible Learning Options: The SCMSP offers flexible learning options to accommodate the diverse needs of learners. These options include full-time, part-time, and evening classes, as well as online learning platforms. This flexibility allows learners to balance their studies with other commitments, such as work or family responsibilities.
  4. Accreditation and Certification: Upon successful completion of the SCMSP, learners are awarded the NSC, which is recognized by employers and higher education institutions. This certification opens up pathways for further education, training, and employment opportunities.
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Challenges and Opportunities

Despite its positive impact, the SCMSP faces several challenges that hinder its effectiveness and reach. These challenges include:

  1. Limited Funding: The program is often underfunded, leading to resource constraints and a shortage of qualified teachers and support staff.
  2. Lack of Awareness: Many potential beneficiaries are unaware of the existence of the SCMSP or the opportunities it provides.
  3. Stigma and Discrimination: Some learners may face stigma or discrimination for returning to school or pursuing a second chance education.
  4. Socio-economic Factors: Poverty, unemployment, and family responsibilities can pose significant barriers to learners’ participation in the program.

Despite these challenges, the SCMSP presents numerous opportunities for learners to transform their lives and contribute to the development of South Africa. The program provides a pathway for individuals to overcome past obstacles, acquire valuable skills and knowledge, and achieve their educational goals.

Impact and Success Stories

The SCMSP has made a significant impact on the lives of thousands of learners across South Africa. The program has contributed to increased matriculation success rates, improved access to higher education, and reduced unemployment among its beneficiaries. Here are a few inspiring success stories:

  1. Thando Mthembu: After dropping out of school due to financial difficulties, Thando enrolled in the SCMSP and successfully obtained her NSC. She went on to pursue a degree in social work and now works as a community development practitioner, helping others in need.
  2. Sipho Dlamini: Sipho was forced to leave school to support his family after his father passed away. Through the SCMSP, he was able to complete his matric and secure a job as a technician in a local manufacturing company.
  3. Nomfundo Ndlovu: Nomfundo struggled academically in high school and failed to obtain her matric certificate. With the support of the SCMSP, she persevered and eventually achieved her dream of becoming a teacher.
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These stories highlight the transformative power of the SCMSP in empowering individuals to overcome adversity, achieve their educational goals, and build a better future for themselves and their communities.


The Second Chance Matric Support Programme is a vital initiative that provides a lifeline for learners who have been denied the opportunity to complete their secondary education. Through its comprehensive support system, flexible learning options, and accredited curriculum, the SCMSP empowers learners to overcome challenges, acquire valuable skills and knowledge, and achieve their educational aspirations. By investing in second chance education, South Africa can unlock the potential of its citizens, reduce inequality, and build a more prosperous and inclusive society.