14th Jan 2019 at 5:15 pm #69185
The DHET has sent a request to the SETA chairpersons and CEOs requesting “inputs and comments on the QCTO plan of revoking quality assurance functions delegated to SETAs”.
In the letter the DHET “strongly advices (sic) all SETAs to engage with their respective stakeholders in order to ensure that their inputs and comments are furnished and submitted, as no further extension would be granted”.
The submission date is 23 January 2019.
It appears from the information I have that not all the SETA Chairpersons and CEOs have sought “input from their respective stakeholders” on the proposals.
My understanding would be that the majority of skills-universe members are “respective stakeholders” in that they are SDPs, or SDFs, or assessors, or moderators, or material developers – so the question is: have you been engaged to provide input or comment?
The DHET letter is attached with the 16 page “Plan for Revoking Quality Functions delegated to SETAs”.
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15th Jan 2019 at 8:20 am #69195
15th Jan 2019 at 12:25 pm #69199
I have read the annexure a couple of times, using various different color highlighters (for my own understanding). It takes me back a couple of years, when providers started complaining that there is not enough information about the QCTO, questions raised with SETAs are ignored, and a whole book of complaints, interesting yet shocking discussions, alignment of legacy qualifications takes forever, hundreds of opinions and the list goes on. The annexure is clear, and now we know why the QCTO have been struggling – the SETAs doesn’t want to work with the QCTO at all. We all want a set standard, better processes, easier communications, faster turnaround times, don’t we? Now the DHET have given instruction. Perhaps this is what the QCTO needed! Support from DHET to streamline the way forward. I have dealt with various QCTO applications (from different sectors) and the outcomes have been fantastic. The QCTO staff have gone the extra mile (although with little capacity). QCTO is the way forward. The more you engage with the QCTO, the better for you and your learners. Providers will be treated with respect, guided and assisted the way it should be. I will work with the QCTO and DHET anytime.
15th Jan 2019 at 2:15 pm #69200
Thank you Lynel and Des,
One thing that I am not clear on – if it’s there I am missing it – please tell me.
What is the plan for the people? From an industrial relations perspective:
Is the plan for all of the SETA QA people to move across to the QCTO? that looks like a transfer as a going concern of a part of a business.
If so will there still be QA sectors within the QCTO?
Or is the plan to employ new QA people in the QCTO? That would mean that the QA people within the SETAs will be retrenched.
If that is the plan then it makes sense that the SETAs would not want to cooperate at all.
It also seems to me that unfair labour practices might take place – the LRA requires that when an employer contemplates a change likely to lead to a retrenchment then they are obliged to consult. But the SETAs as current employers are not contemplating – the QCTO is – with the DHET.
If they are contemplating retrenchments before or after the transfer then there are labour relations unfair labour practice implications.
I would be interrested to know what the people plan is.
15th Jan 2019 at 3:12 pm #69202
A sensitive matter! The answer is unknown, and information of whether QA staff will transfer over to the QCTO or be retrenched is the biggest secret. One SETA staff member attempted to get the same information from their SETA head office, with no response. Then the same SETA staff member attempted to address this with the QCTO, and was referred back to the SETA. For the SETA staff in the QA divisions, it must be terrible, not knowing whether they have a job tomorrow or not.
The QCTO publishes vacancies all the time, and this is open to those who quality for the specific positions. If I was in a QA position in the SETA, I would apply for every single vacancy at the QCTO. It is an open process.
Then I go back to the Annexure, and think…….. If the SETA CEOs refuse to attend meetings with the QCTO, how will this process be conducted, if only one Acting SETA CEO pitched? Surely if every SETA CEO attended, the take-over and “transfer” of staff can be negotiated. In order to give QA Seta staff information. It will be interesting to see what happens after the 23rd January 2019. Will all the SETAs submit their input as per the DHET request, or will the SETAs ignore the DHET?
15th Jan 2019 at 8:14 pm #69205
Thank you for the clarification Lynel – that has been my concern – that there are questions about how the people matters are being handled.
On your last question – my understanding is that as stakeholders we have certain constitutional rights – to be consulted – and to fair administrative action. So the 23rd will definitely be an interesting day.
16th Jan 2019 at 6:50 am #69206
Hi Sylvia. Each SETA have HR Managers or a HR division. It could be that they are dealing with it, or perhaps negotiating transfers to different departments within the SETA? I don’t think we will get any information, it seems that this sensitive issue is dealt with, behind closed doors.
Hoping that we will see the outcome after the 23rd January! This year we will need to ensure that we are ready for change, keep updated with gazettes and communication for sure.
16th Jan 2019 at 11:45 am #69211
If the objective of doing this is for efficiency and faster turn-around time frames then I support it, however the Labour legislation and policies should be adhered to if the SETA stuff will be affected negatively in all this. I believe they should just transfer them to the QCTO since they have no enough capacity as it stands.
16th Jan 2019 at 11:52 am #69212
All SETA staff should definitely not be automatically transferred to the QCTO. If the person qualifies for the position, and believe in quality (not red tape and powerplay) then they deserve to be transferred. Many SETA staff is employed on contract basis – if they are not able to do the job, then there are other career opportunities for them, I am sure.
16th Jan 2019 at 7:27 pm #69223
17th Jan 2019 at 8:58 am #69228
That is an excellent question! My understanding is that the performance of SETAs is complicated. It doesn’t start nor stop at HR level. The number factors that influence performance is massive such as: new/amended legislations, SETA constitution, transformation in the sector(s), economy, composition of boards, regular democratic municipal elections, service delivery protests, financial management, unions, levy collections, funding challenges, corporate governance, unfunded mandates, labour market data, interlinking problems, sector skills plans, court cases, high staff turnover, targets, annual performance plans monitored by the Ministry/Parliament, national strategies and the list goes on. Perhaps the revoking of the QA functions is far greater and complicated than what we think/assume. Information is very limited, but would be interesting to know/read ………………….. How difficult can one question be?
17th Jan 2019 at 8:59 am #69229
That is an excellent question! My understanding is that the performance of SETAs is complicated. It doesn’t start nor stop at HR level. The number of factors that influence performance is massive such as: new/amended legislations, SETA constitution, transformation in the sector(s), economy, composition of boards, regular democratic municipal elections, service delivery protests, financial management, unions, levy collections, funding challenges, corporate governance, unfunded mandates, labour market data, interlinking problems, sector skills plans, court cases, high staff turnover, targets, annual performance plans monitored by the Ministry/Parliament, national strategies and the list goes on. Perhaps the revoking of the QA functions is far greater and complicated than what we think/assume. Information is very limited, but would be interesting to know/read ………………….. How difficult can one question be?
17th Jan 2019 at 6:37 pm #69235
I am changing the slant of the conversation from an HR matter to a personal one.
The SETA with whom I have accreditation still has no Occupational Qualification registered to replace the legacy qualifications for which we are accredited to offer.
I feel like we have not even been afforded the opportunity to move into the QCTO space let alone be accredited and QA’d by the QCTO.
QCTO remains a dark phenomenon for us.
We have been most eager for the last 5 years to move into the realm of QCTO but to no avail.
I have read the document and love the idea of not having to be abused by the SETA and rather dealing with the QCTO.
Am I correct in understanding that QA by QCTO to replace the typical interactive moderation’s as per the SETA will be by monitoring numbers via the OQLMS. That is monitoring and not QA. QA requires the evaluation of evidence on a representative sample basis. How will this be done for EISA and FISA. Will there be an appeal process against Assessment Center judgements?
Overall I cannot feel comfortable with the revoking proposal considering the front door matters of new Occupational Qualification registration is not even in place yet. I feel the QCTO is really only focusing on Trades.
17th Jan 2019 at 7:18 pm #69236
The lists/registers of occupational qualifications have increased:
1. See list of Registered Occupational Qualifications
2. Then there is a list of Qualifications under development (it indicates which phase it is at)
3. Then the list of Qualifications for Public Comment
4. And a list of Qualifications that have been recommended to SAQA for registration.
You might even find, that the qualification that you are looking for, under your SETA, are in process of development or in the phase of being recommended for registration to SAQA by another SETA or body. Some SETAs have been very involved with the QCTO and their qualifications are growing fast, whereby other SETAs might not be interested? The QCTO even started aligning and developing qualifications themselves (in process), by increasing capacity, contracting, running roadshows and workshops.
Have you ever visited the QCTO, or started engaging with them. You don’t need permission to engage/meet/call/email them at all. Why would you wait for your SETA to give you information, if the information can be obtained by yourself.
Let’s take it one authority higher. How much assistance, guidance and information have your received from your SETA, regarding the compulsory registration with the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET)?
I understand that, not all providers can sit and read every gazette, regulation, notice, circular etc. The SETAs should communicate important changes, rules and stipulations on a continuous basis to all providers – it just aint happening. Majority of providers in South Africa, keep quiet for various reasons (I understand and respect the decision and reasons). This is why we have networks, in order to obtain as much information as possible from each other.
Interesting discussion, for sure! Thank you
17th Jan 2019 at 11:26 pm #69238
Thank you Debbie – good to hear from you – although in difficult circumstances.
I would strongly agree with Lynel. I know that you are an extremely experienced and competent ETD practitioner.
It appears that the SETA with which you you are working are unwilling/unable to engage with you and ensure that relevant legacy qualifications are being suitably replaced. Therefore, I would agree with the advice that you approach the QCTO and engage with them directly.
To my mind – it is apparent that there are power dynamics at play: – to the detriment of skills development implementation, and I would suggest – contravening our Constitutional right to fair administrative action – hopefully the DHET will be able to call the administrators to order.
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