The cost of neglecting education in South Africa


The cost of neglecting education in South Africa

With Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga recently announcing that government would start implementing plans that allow learners to leave school at the end of Grade 9 with an alternative set of qualifications, among these the so-called General Education Certificate, the conversation about education about education in South Africa has once again been ignited.

Despite its high spending, which is comparable with much richer countries in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), South African learners and teachers rank around the bottom in comparative international benchmarking tests. Last year’s matric results revealed that only 48.1% of learners that were enrolled in grade 10 in 2016 actually wrote matric in 2018.

Whichever way you look at it, basic educational qualifications matter in the real world. Statistics in the Quarterly Labour Force Survey for the fourth quarter of 2018 showed that of the 6.1 million unemployed persons, about 57.1% had an education level below matric, while those who did have matric made up 34.2% of unemployed people. Contrarily, graduates made up just 1.7% of unemployed people, and those with some form of tertiary qualification only formed 6.3% of the unemployed population.

The stats are clear: education is a key and driving factor of ultimately gaining employment and being able to become self-sufficient.

At Sparrow FET College, the work we do is twofold: aside from providing training and skills development to learners, the College also addresses critical needs shortages across various sectors.

Sparrow FET graduates get their training in a simulated work environment and continue their comprehensive training with an industry placement, that also very often leads to employment after they’ve graduated from Sparrow.

We believe in the empowerment of the youth through skills training and development that aid learners in finding employment. Because their progress is continuously tracked and monitored, with job coaches that continue monitoring the placement of Sparrow graduates during their job placements, we ensure that the young people who leave our campus are ready and fully equipped to play their part in building the South African economy.

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