learning

NGO Bemoans Lack of Resources in Rural Schools

Equal Education, a non-governmental organisation, says unless access to school resources improves in the rural areas, learners will continue to underperform.

Congratulating the class of 2015, Equal Education says the pass rates in the worst performing areas needed to be looked at in the context of high levels of inequality.

The organisation also calls on the results to be presented differently, looking at rural vs urban, township vs suburban, former white schools vs former black schools.

NSFAS to Fund 405 000 Students in 2016

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) says it plans to fund 405 000 students in 2016 alone.

NFSAS executive officer, Msulwana Daca, says they are committed to building “a robust and strong administrative system to give money to the students who are really in need.”

Close to R10 billion will be spent by NSFAS to assist students in 2016 and part of this amount, R1.4 billion, will be made available upfront for universities to help qualifying students who cannot afford registration fees.

Judges Lash Motshekga Over Textbooks

Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga, and her department have been lashed by senior judges for their ‘woeful’ inability to deliver textbooks to schools in Limpopo three years after a new curriculum was introduced.

On 2 December 2015, the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal by Motshekga against the decision of the High Court in Pretoria‚ and upheld the cross-appeal by Basic Education For All and affected schools.

NSFAS Issues Call for 2016 Applications

While government scrambles to free up funds to make up for a shortfall caused by the announcement of a freeze in university fee increases‚ the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) issued a final call for 2016 applications for funding.

Those needing assistance to study at selected public universities and technical vocation and education teaching (TVET) colleges in the 2016 academic year have until 30 November 2015 to submit applications.

Language Policy at the University of Stellenbosch

The FW de Klerk Foundation has taken note, with shock and disappointment, of the letter and annexure of Prof Wim De Villiers to the Senate of the University of Stellenbosch. The letter makes it clear that if the Rector's proposals are approved by the University Council on 30 November 2015, Afrikaans will no longer have an equal position with English at the University of Stellenbosch.

R1.9b to Offset Zero Fee Hike at Universities

The Standing and Select Committees on Appropriations as well as the Portfolio Committee on Higher Education and Training have unanimously agreed that funding for the post-school education sector has to be increased.

According to Parliament, this follows a joint meeting held today as part of the hearings on the 2015 Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS).

The #FeesMustFall Fight is Not Just About Fees

South Africa's post-apartheid reality has unfolded with massive disconnects between the provision of the rights enshrined in our much-lauded Constitution and the realities on the ground. The current wave of student protests across universities is a clear indication that students are fed up with not being able to afford exorbitant fees; with the conditions they live in; the poor prospects of employment after studying; and with state money being wasted through corruption.

State-Led Initiatives and Students Can Break Impasse

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) weighed in on the university fees protests by saying it is ‘desirous that normality of classes‚ learning and teaching is restored’.
 
The commission also promised to release findings and recommendations of its own probe into “factors that either constrain or enhance levels and speed of transformation in institutions of higher learning in the country”.
 

SA Fails ‘Dismally’ in Maths, Science

Even though South Africa came second last out of 140 on the World Economic Forum (WEF) rankings in mathematics and science, local education authorities rubbished the rankings saying they were flawed.

However, education experts say the rankings are a close reflection of where education is in South Africa.

Educationalist, Graeme Bloch, says South Africa needs to up its game not only in mathematics and science but in all subjects.

Bloch adds: “The rankings are pretty close, learners need to be pushed and work hard in maths, science and humanities.”

Africa’s Post-2015 Development: The Role of Mobile Phones in Higher Education

The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) is of the view that education is a central component of the post-2015 development agenda. Education benefits society in many ways, including through reducing poverty levels, improving health and fostering economic development, job creation and higher salaries, as well as improving governance.(2) Considering the benefits, it is important that education is made more accessible than it currently is.

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