Skills development money starts flowing 7

Welcome back to work to all our Skills Portal and Skills Universe members. I hope you have had a productive start to the year and that 2010 treats you well!

Someone who has already been busy in 2010 is Higher Education and Training Minister Dr Blade Nzimande. He has announced a number of initiatives to assist young people who are struggling to access education and training after leaving school. He has allocated R500 million from the National Skills Fund to a youth training scheme and has asked the Setas to match that figure from their funds.

In an exclusive interview with the Skills Portal, the department’s director-general Mary Metcalfe explains their priorities for the year, and appointing a CEO to run the National Skills Fund is near the top of the agenda.

Will making someone responsible for the National Skills Fund solve the skills funding problem, or are there other steps the department of Higher Education and Training should be taking? Is spending money on re-teaching learners who couldn’t achieve university passes the best use of the skills development funds?

What do you think?

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7 thoughts on “Skills development money starts flowing


    What government is doing is a good thing especially by providing with with business skills it will realy help to maintain an economical country i also benefited in this project i was studing at NERPO for agi-business i now have buisiness skill, technical skill, life skills and computer skills but still i find it so hard to get an assistance to open my business because it require lot of money because they say i must have train-the trainee certificate which cost a lot

    my opinion is government must make sure that after they train people they must assist them because it will be a waste of money and time because in lot of working places that iv applied in they need diplomas and degrees which we don’t have

  • Leon Pillay

    The National Skills has it contributed towards devoping skills in our country? Was it an effective tool in adressing the skills shortage? Has it empowered the lives of our many previousely disadvantaged? Has it closed the gap between white skills versus black skills in industry across our economic sphere? Has it improved the technical skills shortage in trade and related artisan shortages, that is so needed in our country. If our focus lies with those learners who could not obtain university passes, then we need to sit back and ask ourselves, does an individual need a university degree to unblock your sewer system? Does a person need a university degree to service your motor vehicle? Does a person need a university degree to print a newspaper? Does a person need a university degree to build a house? The questions could be endless..The saying, too many chiefs, not enough Indians. Get real people, FET institutions are our future. I went to an FET college, not because I did not make a university enterance pass, I just could not afford it. My technical skills though in the years saw me just as successful and times even more to those with university degrees. Reteaching learners????? someone who could not obtain a university pass been retaught…..what a load of hogwash…..this person will do NTC( National Trade Courses) to obtain a technical qualification, reteaching???? To think that we are so learnerd with our present education system, rather our skills development funds go to the right people for the right reasons….Bring back the Apprenticeship/Learnership board, a three tire effort between business, labour and government…it will work you all just wait and see. And to have negative feelings about HE and there decisions thus far, is simply feelings around those who will feel their pockets hurt, only because the system that is presently in place is a system that benefits a few.


    I think those learners who did not achieve the university entry points should be screened very properly by the potential universities and be placed on a bridging course as the capacity building or upgrade, after completed that the course then the unirvesity will know exactly who can cope and who cannot cope.
    regards zibo

  • melidah mamakwa

    In 2009, no unemployed person was trained due to some logistic in the Department of labour, now labour was ready to start and New department Of HE is taken over, it looks like even in 2010 the unemployed may not be trained. I was of the opinion that Department of HE will train for qualifcation and labour will help those who want a skill just ot survive, so am not sure HE is going to do them all, if that is the case is too much, we have many people who cannot go to university or cannot even go through FET, however they still need to be employed and training of the uemployed was the answer.

  • Warren Rupert Jacobs

    I think we should consider spending the money to assess the current skills and training of our educators for GET, FET, HET and University level educators, as well as the resources of these different school systems that maintain such a high number of learners with real learning disabilities. I believe the poor education and passing rates are related to the fact that many students are still expected (under the OBE system) to learn in the same traditional way we all had to in the previous “era”. I feel the problem of poor results and passing rates can be turned around should we invest more money in providing the necessary resources for learners, educators and institutions, which produces the best platform for optimal learner performance.
    I think if we start with the Foundation phase(GET) education where systems does not appropriately allow for learning disabilities. If we “turn the lights on “really early, it stays on throughout their education career, which will result in achieving higher university passing rates.

  • Hennie Potgieter

    Making someone responsible for the National skills Fund is useless unless the proper good governance procedures are implemented and continuous control is exercised. The matter of teaching the teachers well we are doing it in industry through the various unit standards and that might be the best route to follow.All things are possible for those who have the right attitude. Throwing money at an education problem will not solve it as we are very well aware – look what happened to our education system in spite of all the billions spent.

  • Chris Reay

    Mary Metcalfe makes the point that the projections for the scarce skills list have been almost conjecture, undertaken by the DoL, which failed to consult with the institutions that would have some reasonably accurate data on this. How will she manage this now?