Higher Education Budget Geared Towards Skills Development

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Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation Blade Nzimande has outlined how his department’s budget will develop scarce skills needed by the South African economy.


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The Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA) function seeks to facilitate skills development by creating learning programmes such as learnerships, skills programmes and internships. This is done by providing grants to employers and training providers.

In the 2021/22 financial year, SETA’s will spend a projected R1 billion.

The minister revealed that SETAs combined, placed 44 619 unemployed individuals into learnerships, of which over 34 710 were young people below the ages of 35 years old and over 25 550 were females at the cost of about R 1 billion.

He explained, “In the previous financial year, SETAs placed 9 901 interns, of which 9 096 were young people below the age of 35 years old and 6 455 were females. Our SETAs spent just over R883 million in this regard”.

SETAs placed 5 183 university students in workplaces at the value of R300 million and about 8 539 learners TVET students, with female students accounting for 5 656 at the total cost of R393 million.

He added that SETA’s will also continue to support his department in the development of critical high-end skills in selected technology areas such as the bioeconomy, space science, technology energy, and intellectual property management.

Minister Nzimande said his department will ensure that a percentage of SETA discretionary grant funding will be dedicated to Community Education and Training (CET) Colleges including providing some of their training programmes.

CET colleges offer a variety of academic, skills and occupational programmes and will be bolstered with two new accredited programmes that will be added in the form of entrepreneurship and digital skills programmes.

Nzimande said, “Our CET colleges will now utilise the TVET College infrastructure to expand the provision of short skills programmes and be accredited for short skills programmes as part of an innovative Quality Assurance model developed by the Quality Council for Trades and Occupation (QCTO)”.

 

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