NSFAS proposes new entry criteria for 2023

Johannesburg – The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) recently announced new eligibility requirements for funding.

Kagiso Mamabolo, NSFAS spokesperson and office of the chief executive officer, posted a statement on Twitter confirming that the eligibility criteria and conditions for financial assistance is currently in the process of changing.

If the proposed idea is approved, it will go into effect in the 2023 academic year, with some transitional systems in place.

For the first time, they are closely working with all stakeholders involved on the proposed funding recommendations. ‎

“Concerns and inputs will be considered by stakeholders such as student leadership, university vice-chancellors, technical and vocational educational education, training college principles, and some spheres of government, among others, and a public announcement will be made by the Minister of Education,” the statement read.

Proposed 75% progression rule

Explaining the proposed 75% progression rule, which was reported in the media early this week, the entity said the proposed policy is aimed at encouraging students to pass their courses and/or modules, and just with “the pass mark”.

“The proposed policy, if implemented, would only apply as of the 2023 academic year, and would not be applied to students who entered higher education for the first time, also referred to as FTEN students. This is in recognition of the transition that many students make from high school to university.

“It should be noted that NSFAS funds students that would not otherwise be able to access higher education to ensure that they qualify and ultimately contribute to the economy.

“Therefore, this progression criteria is aimed at ensuring that students complete their qualifications within the allowable timeframe to ensure return on investment and to provide more opportunities to deserving students,” NSFAS said.

It said all other matters contained in the proposed funding guidelines, including student accommodation, are subject to consultative processes.

“All these policy considerations are aimed at ensuring sustainability of the scheme and for the well-being of students, to ensure that they succeed.

“In this instance, the entity has the South African Union of Students on the proposed guidelines and as the entity, we are awaiting their submission,” NSFAS said.

As it is a proposed idea, no final decision has been taken. ‎

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