Dlamini hails so­cial-grant bach­e­lor’s passes suc­cess

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS -

THOU­SANDS of stu­dents who de­pend on the gov­ern­ment’s so­cial grants are now el­i­gi­ble to fur­ther their stud­ies af­ter pass­ing their Na­tional Se­nior Cer­tifi­cate ex­ams, So­cial Devel­op­ment Min­is­ter Batha­bile Dlamini said yes­ter­day.

“De­spite the con­di­tions of our vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren, 41 per­cent man­aged to re­ceive a bach­e­lor’s pass, which gives them en­try for any ter­tiary ed­u­ca­tion. The ma­jor­ity of the learn­ers who ob­tained a bach­e­lor’s pass were from KwaZulu-Natal and Gaut­eng,” Dlamini said.

“Th­ese re­sults are very im­por­tant be­cause they show that 83 per­cent of the grant re­cip­i­ents are el­i­gi­ble to fur­ther their stud­ies for ei­ther a diploma or a de­gree. This in­for­ma­tion is vi­tal par­tic­u­larly for NSFAS (Na­tional Stu­dent Fi­nan­cial Aid Scheme) as th­ese stu­dents should au­to­mat­i­cally qual­ify for fund­ing to fur­ther their stud­ies at in­sti­tu­tions of higher learn­ing.”

Dlamini said that fol­low­ing the re­moval of the means test”for fi­nan­cial aid el­i­gi­bil­ity, there should be no hin­drance for poor stu­dents when they pur­sue their cho­sen ca­reers.

Of the 674 620 full-time learn­ers who were reg­is­tered for the Na­tional Se­nior Cer­tifi­cate last year, 188 758 were so­cial grant ben­e­fi­cia­ries, she said.

“Out of this to­tal, 178 411 grant ben­e­fi­cia­ries ac­tu­ally wrote their ex­ams – which is 95 per­cent (of the 188 758). This sug­gests that over 10 000 dropped be­fore sit­ting for their fi­nal ex­ams. We com­mit to in­ves­ti­gat­ing rea­sons for this dropout.

“I’m very pleased to an­nounce that the girl child con­tin­ues to take all the op­por­tu­ni­ties given to her by gov­ern­ment. We want to re­port that 112 409 of the to­tal num­ber of so­cial grant learn­ers who wrote ma­tric were fe­male and they live in Gaut­eng and KwaZulu-Natal. Of most con­cern­ing to us is that 66 002 were boys.”

Every month, the Depart­ment of So­cial Devel­op­ment, through its agency – the South African So­cial Se­cu­rity Agency – dis­trib­utes over R11 bil­lion in so­cial grants to the “most vul­ner­a­ble and poor” across South Africa.

“Every month, more than 12 mil­lion chil­dren re­ceive so­cial grants. This is the in­vest­ment that the tax­payer, through the South African gov­ern­ment, is mak­ing in the fu­ture of the chil­dren,” said Dlamini.

FOR THE CHIL­DREN: Batha­bile Dlamini

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