Apparently the old "streaming" approach has been abandoned? Seen as being discriminatory or what?
Probably. Ideally, one should do something like what they do in Germany: by around grade three or thereabouts, kids are put into one of several streams. Thus kids with the necessary mental equipment to become scientists and engineers and doctors are put into a more purely academic stream, kids who are more technically oriented are taught accordingly, and so on. They want the kids to end up with a skill they can sell, and as little unemployment as possible, instead of being obsessed that everyone should get a Ph.D.
This is exactly what South Africa needs, but two things prevent it. One is that we don't remotely have Germany's socio-economic equality: unlike in Germany, the difference in salary and living standard here between someone who did vocational training and someone who became a lawyer or engineer is huge. Thus, nobody wants to be in the more technical or vocational streams.
Secondly, and even worse, because of our history, for the next generation or three, inevitably, the academic stream will contain mostly whites and the other streams mostly blacks. This is politically unacceptable.
At the same time it is really the only realistic way to go. So for the sake of political correctness, we simply ignore reality and instead sacrifice the future of most of our children, thus ensuring that the inequality and dependency on government welfare will stretch even further into the future. Perhaps this even suits the current government fine, because a population dependent on it will keep right on voting for it.
I'm fresh out of sympathy. In a democracy, the majority voting block richly deserves its leaders.