According to the Ministry of Education the decision to make mathematics a compulsory promotional subject starting from Grade 1 through to Grade 12 is in the best interest of learners and the nation at large.
"Namibia is aiming to become a knowledge-based economy and in order to achieve this, the Namibian education system needs to improve the quality output of the education and training sector and prioritise subjects that will provide a base for developing the most critical human resources," said the spokesman of the Ministry of Education, Romeo Muyanda.
Muyanda was responding to queries and concerns expressed by some parents and learners, saying it is unfair not to promote learners to the next grade simply because they have failed mathematics. He said mathematics has been made a promotional subject, because it is essential to prioritise subjects that can steer Namibia towards Vision 2030, such as agriculture, engineering, geology, information technology and medicine.
He further said the decision was discussed comprehensively with all stakeholders at the National Education Conference, which took place in 2011. "Therefore all learners who were in Grade 11 in 2012 had mathematics and all those who are in Grade 12 this year will write mathematics in their final Nov/Dec examinations," he explained.
He added that the ministry is merely implementing a Cabinet directive, as well as a recommendation by the Education and Training Sector Improvement Programme (ETSIP) to make mathematics a compulsory subject up to Grade 12.