In a Green Paper on Post-School Education and Training, the South African government Department of Higher Education and Training recently announced its plans to raise university enrolments from the current 900 000 students to 1.5 million by 2030. Also mooted was a target of 4 million students for colleges and other post-school institutions – 6 times more than current numbers. These changes will raise the participation rate in post-school education of 18-24 year olds from the current 16% to 23%.
The Green Paper includes in its agenda:
- new funding;
- improvement of access to education and training opportunities;
- research on financial problems facing many students as well as poor living conditions and student support services;
- strengthening of institutions to improve education quality;
- the development of a post-school education and training system that is equitable, accessible and affordable to all sections of the population, with free education and training for the poor;
- support for previously disadvantaged universities, including asisstance to improve infrastructure and quality of teaching and research;
- reform of South Africa’s complex regulatory system, by doing away with duplication. and incoherence and inconsistency in the functioning parts of the system;
- building coherence between basic education and the post-school system and between the post-school system and the labour market;
- strengthening of collaboration between private and public sectors;
- expansion of distance education, using appropriate information communication technologies, other technologies and methods;
- the creation of two new universities in the Northern Cape and Mpumalanga provinces;
- improvement of throughput rates;
- addressing concern sbout low participation rate of Africans;
- addressing concern about decrease of male students;
- improvement of graduation rates in science, engineering and technology, because it is not meeting economic development objectives;
- strengthening of scholarship in the humanities;
- provision of resources and funding to strenthen teaching in universities, without reducing the importance of research;
- exploration of the possibility of partnerships between public and private institutions;
- strengthening of African languages as part of formal programmes
The Department of Higher Education and Training also plans to work with the Department of Science and Technology to ensure increased support for postgraduate study and for senior researchers, as well as a stable funding model for all educational institutions that conduct research. This means improving research capacity as a major focus for universities with a specific focus on meeting the country’s developmental objectives.
To read more go to Karen McGregor’s article on University World News by Clicking Here!
To read more go to Kim Cloete’s article at Cross Currents on MoneyWeb by Clicking Here!
To read the Green Paper on Post-School Education and Training Click Here!
Filed under: Department of Higher Education and Training, Distance Education, Edu News (South Africa), Higher Education, Minister of Higher Education and Training, Reports, South Africa, universities | Tagged: access, Department of Higher Education and Training, expansion, Funding, Green Paper, Higher Education, improvement, increase enrollments, increase graduates, plan, post-school education, post-school training, post-school youth, redress, restructuring, South Africa, tertiary education, universities | 1 Comment »