Protests: col­leges warned

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS - CRAIG DODDS

STU­DENT protests will spread from univer­si­ties to tech­ni­cal and vo­ca­tional ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing col­leges if they in­crease fees or fail to ac­com­mo­date those in need of a post-school qual­i­fi­ca­tion.

This was the warn­ing from chair­woman of Par­lia­ment’s higher ed­u­ca­tion over­sight com­mit­tee Yvonne Phosa af­ter the De­part­ment of Higher Ed­u­ca­tion and Train­ing pre­sented a progress report this week on the trans­fer of the TVET col­leges from prov­inces to the na­tional level.

She said the “clar­ion call” had been that those who couldn’t go to univer­sity should re­ceive a col­lege ed­u­ca­tion, yet the de­part­ment was urg­ing cau­tion in ramp­ing up en­rol­ment num­bers be­fore there were ad­e­quate fa­cil­i­ties and lec­tur­ers trained to ac­com­mo­date them.

She was re­spond­ing to the de­part­ment’s deputy di­rec­tor-gen­eral, Firoz Pa­tel, who warned that three fac­tors – stu­dent num­bers, fa­cil­i­ties and lec­tur­ers – had to be kept in bal­ance, even if there was a need to dras­ti­cally in­crease en­rol­ments.

There are just over one mil­lion univer­sity stu­dents, com­pared to 700 000 in TVET col­leges, while the govern­ment pol­icy pro­poses the ra­tio should be three to one in favour of the col­leges to fill the gap in tech­ni­cal skills in the coun­try.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.