Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande has praised 2012 matric pupils and has encouraged all those students who failed to qualify for university enrollment to take into consideration alternative further education and training (FET) colleges and various other training options.
Between 2012 and 2015, the government is intending to invest somewhere around R6bn into university infrastructure development with the bulk going towards “historically disadvantaged” institutions.
Whilst there has been a good deal of celebration by students who not too long ago passed their matric exams, a number of issues have already been raised by numerous academics with regards to how universities will cater for new students. Nzimande mentioned that 180,000 will likely be be accepted into universities along with a further 100,000 who will enter FET colleges.
Recent statistics has revealed evidence that more than 270,000 have qualified for enrollment into higher education institutions, and approximately 135,000 will sign up for universities degrees.
Considering the high pass rate in 2012 along with the anticipated higher enrollment into university, Jeffrey Mabelebele, acting CEO of Higher Education South Africa who represents university leadership, has revealed that student enrollment will beyond doubt exceed the space available to cater to these students.
Prominent economist, Chris Hart, agrees that the Department of Basic Education has made significant efforts to boost education and training, nevertheless, the outcomes produced by the schooling system are still not consistent with the state’s investment in basic education.
“Things have improved, but it’s still nowhere near acceptable. Resources invested and results that come out still show that there is still a considerable waste. Countries that put in similar effort produce much, much better results.”- Hart stated
Hart believes that university alternatives for high school students are presently inadequate and incredibly difficult to access. He continued to express the view that alternatives to university are certainly not as good as in previous years. Even apprenticeships are considerably more difficult to access. In previous years, students who were not able to qualify for university entrance would automatically have alternative options. However, these days, finding an alternative option to university has grown to be significantly more challenging.
The department of education has stated that as part of the future infrastructure development and investment in education there is going to be a high priority for the physically challenged in conjunction with accommodation facilities for students.
Source: universityworldnews.com, bdlive.co.za