These Students Will Receive An Increase In NSFAS Allowances

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Several announcements to the tertiary education sector, and TVET Colleges in particular, were made during Minister Blade Nzimande's annual address regarding the DHET's readiness for the 2023 academic year. 


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A big change is coming this year for students enrolled at Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) colleges who are funded by the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS). 

Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Blade Nzimande, announced during his annual address regarding tertiary education preparedness for the academic year, that TVET college students will receive an increase in their NSFAS allowances.

The academic year for TVET colleges typically kicked off in the second week of January. 

An inflation linked increase of 5% on allowances has been effected for South Africa's universities and TVET colleges on NSFAS allowances, with the accommodation allowance to be increased by 7% and capped at R45 000 per student per annum.

According to the Minister, during 2023, a living allowance of R6 000 per annum will be introduced for the first time for TVET College students, and will be distributed on a monthly basis. 

In addition, NSFAS will also administer NSFAS allowances for TVET College students with Disabilities, similar to universities. The Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) Disability Grant for TVET Colleges will also be redirected to NSFAS. 

TVET College students who are registered for an occupational qualification may qualify for NSFAS allowances only if in simulated training. TVET college students studying occupational programmes will be funded for the cost of tuition for the duration of their qualification.

The Minister has reminded TVET students that those who are registered for an occupational qualification that includes an employment contract, do not qualify for NSFAS allowances. Essentially, those working and studying will not be eligible for NSFAS allowances.

TVET college graduates will be funded for a university undergraduate qualification (if they wish to pursue one), regardless of the benefit that they would have derived from the application of the N+ rule at a TVET college level, but on the condition they did not exceed the TVET N+ Rule. 

The DHET is also working to remove "a 40km distance control for TVET college students", instead replacing it with a more equitable 10km radius' this will also be applied to universities.

NSFAS will release application results for both first time entering and returning students on 6 February 2023 while the funded list for continuing students was released on Tuesday.

To those who have not applied for NSFAS funding, the Minister issued a reminder that applications are still open until 31 January, 2023 to apply for funding. 

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