Registrations now open for SA’s best-known mathematics competitions

The South African Mathematics Foundation (SAMF) announced last week that teachers nationwide can now register their learners for the country’s two best-known mathematics competitions.

For the first time in the Foundation’s history, both competitions have full digital capabilities for the registration and payment processes, and the first-round papers.

The NESTLÉ NESPRAY South African Mathematics Challenge (SAMC) is open for all grades 4 to 7s, and the Old Mutual South African Mathematics Olympiad, co-sponsored by the South African Institute for Chartered Accountants (SAICA), welcomes all Grades 8 to 12s.

Both contests are open to all schools in South Africa and neighbouring countries. Schools that rely wholly on the government for funding – known as Quintile 1 and 2 schools – can register their learners free of charge. Quintile 3, 4 and 5 schools and private schools pay a nominal registration fee. For the first time, schools will have an option to write the first rounds of both competitions online.

“Education is an integral part of our Responsible Business strategy at Old Mutual. Our holistic support spans the entire education value chain, from early childhood development to comprehensive Financial Education programmes targeted at a wide range of audiences. Our support for STEM education is part of this approach, and one of the ways we are working to improve maths literacy is by collaborating with the South African Mathematics Foundation. We are exceptionally proud of the initiatives in place to strengthen maths education amongst our youth, and we remain confident that we can jointly drive high impact in the space,” says Celiwe Ross, Human Capital Director at Old Mutual.

“One of the biggest challenges South Africa faces is that our education system does not produce enough learners with acceptable levels of mathematical proficiency to support the country’s dire skills shortage in scarce skill careers such as medicine, actuarial science, chartered accountancy to name a few. As a critical stakeholder in South Africa, the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) plays an active role in improving mathematics education across the country through initiatives such as the South African Maths Olympiad in order to aid the country’s economic growth through the development of young professional who are able to enter these careers,” says Robert Zwane, SAICA Executive: Learning, Development and National Imperatives.

Parents who want to register their children must reach out to the school’s mathematics teacher. The entry forms will be available on www.samf.ac.za. Registrations for the Olympiad closes on 21 February 2022 and for the Challenge on 24 February 2022. For more information, send an email to info@samf.ac.za.