Why Nsfas Rejected Over 140 000 Funding Applications

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The National Student Financial Aid Scheme has rejected several student funding applications. However, the higher education department has stated that there are justifiable reasons for rejecting this cohort of applicants. 


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The Department of Higher Education has been brought under scrutiny over Nsfas student funding. EFF Member of the Portfolio Committee on Communications, Vuyani Pambo wrote to the Minister of Higher Education, Blade Nzimande.

The query was over the bursary scheme’s ability to fund students, particularly students whose funding applications have been rejected. 

According to the minister, Nsfas rejected a total of 143,117 student funding applications for the 2023 academic year. Nzimande went on to say there are legitimate reasons for these rejections, including those listed below:

  1. The applicant is deceased as per DHA records 4 applicants 
  2. Financially Ineligible (household income exceeds the threshold) 48,549 applicants
  3. The highest level of qualification at which NSFAS may fund has already been achieved 18,069 applicants
  4. Insufficient information provided as a result NSFAS cannot make a funding decision 65,233 applicants
  5. Invalid National ID and/or names and surnames provided by 16 applicants
  6. Not compliant with the Academic Eligibility Criteria 3 applicants
  7. N+ Rule Exceeded 10,525 applicants
  8. Not compliant with the N+ Rule (funding pathway) 62 applicants
  9. Not compliant with the Academic Eligibility Criteria 3 applicants
  10. Not Eligible for NSFAS funding, funded by another funder 656 applicants

The Department currently produces the First-Time Entering Undergraduate Cohort Studies for Public Higher Education Institutions Report, which offers a yearly assessment of the dropout and throughput rates in the university sector on a nationwide level.

Nzimande added that the Department does not keep track of unsuccessful students, but is thinking about doing tracer studies to find out how graduates and dropouts are faring.

Applications for the 2023 academic year opened on 28 September 2022 and will close on 31 January 2023. Within 30 days of being informed that their application was unsuccessful, applicants have the right to appeal their rejection. Students who appeal must give a justification and supporting documentation.

 


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