Private training providers will feel the heat 7


Private training providers should prepare for a greater level of evaluation and verification as government heightens its qualification policies.

The Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) will soon invite public comment on important amendments to the draft National Qualifications Framework (NQF) Amendment Bill.


The bill, which was published in November 2016, will particularly affect education and training providers and employers in the reporting of misrepresented qualifications, and will impact upon private education providers which will need to be registered.


The amendments to nine sections of the existing National Qualifications Framework Act 67of 2008 will help tighten up controls on qualifications awarded by institutions, especially non-registered private providers. The bill will ensure qualifications are in line with the NQF, and support the clamp down on fraudulent qualifications.


The provisions give more powers to the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) to evaluate and verify qualifications of employees, members of Boards and Councils, and establish registers of fraudulent and misrepresented qualifications reported by institutions or employers.


The provisions will also compel all private providers of education and training to be registered with the Department and to be accredited by one of the three quality councils.


The new law also will oblige employers to refer qualifications of employees to SAQA for validation and verification, and for a separate register for professional designations.


It will also provide for the reformulation of evaluation criteria for foreign qualifications.


The comments may be made by post to Private Bag X174 Pretoria 0001 for the attention of Advocate E Boshoff, or by email to 
boshoff.e@dhet.gov.za or by fax to (012) 324 8230.

The draft amendments can be viewed here

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7 thoughts on “Private training providers will feel the heat

  • Louise Sterling

    This is very good news – we have been waiting for years for proper control over learning material quality. If there were simple plagiarism checks on Learner Guides, a large number of qualifications out there will be found to be cut and paste jobs from the Internet. 

  • sylvia hammond

    Hi Tamsin, on my reading of section 3 of the Bill the answer to your question is Yes. The section indicates “every private education institution or private provider must be registered” note the MUST and then “to offer qualificatons or part-qualifications contemplated in section (2) or any component thereof.”
    That is badly worded – the “any component thereof” should follow the word part-qualifications.
    But I believe that the meaning is intended to be any provider offering any part of a qualification or part-qualification.

  • Cindy Payle Post author

    Hi Tamsin – im not sure. I must confess i’m not really clued up on the details of the bill but have merely shared the content I received. I will ask Sylvia, or perhaps one of the other members can shed some light?

  • Tamsin Puren

    Hi Cindy, sorry for perhaps an ignorant question (I haven’t read through document as yet) what about providers that only offer unit standards – there are still some of us out there! Do we need to get registered as well or does this only affect providers with full qualifications?

  • Lynel Farrell

    Dr Nel, interesting comment indeed!  It is no secret that CHE do not approve of “unit standards” or even the way that the Setas work (their stipulations/requirements/regulations/rules).  How will they evaluate learning material? 

  • Hannes Nel

    Wonderful and necessary idea. However, the implementation is already proving to be flawed. How can the CHE evaluate learning content if they refuse to work through the manuals being used by private providers?

  • Lynel Farrell

    Hi Cindy, thank you for this.  I really like the part whereby the amendments will ensure qualifications are in line with the NQF and to support the clamp down on fraudulent qualifications.  This will give the honest Accredited Providers air to breath, but the Shenanigans will become a thing of the past – so maybe this is heat will be experienced by the “mince machines”, those who have tried to “bride” officials, those whom have stolen information/learning material ect – the shenanigans will feel the heat for sure.  What an important journey SAQA, DHET and the QCTO will be taking on.  This might just be the relief the honest providers have been waiting for.  Get rid of the rubbish and let the professionals continue with their important and honest work!  Building and upskilling the nation at large!