Question NW3314 to the Minister of Higher Education and Training

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18 September 2015 - NW3314

Profile picture: Madisha, Mr WM

Madisha, Mr WM to ask the Minister of Higher Education and Training

Whether the Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs) are now (a) functioning in a manner that is recommended in the National Development Plan, (b) providing workers with the skills that the country desperately needs and (c) directly assisting a large number of trainees annually to acquire nationally recognised qualifications; if not, why not in each case; if so, what are the relevant details in each case; (2) Whether he will make a statement on the extent to which SETAs were now adding genuine value in upskilling the South African workforce?


  1. (a) The Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs) work in accordance with the White Paper for Post-School Education and Training, thus responding to the National Development Plan (NDP). Earlier this year, the Department tabled in Parliament its Strategic Plan (2015-2020) which was developed on the basis of the vision espoused in the NDP, 2014 - 2019 Medium Term Strategic Framework, and policy imperatives of the White Paper, which gives the direction to the entire post-school education and training sector.

(b) Yes, the Skills Development Act, 97 of 1998 directs that SETAs must, in accordance with any requirements that may be prescribed; develop Sector Skills Plans within the framework of the national skills development strategy. Goal 5 of the National Skills Development Strategy (NSDS) III focuses on encouraging better use of the workplace-based skills development, whereupon SETAs are required through mandatory and discretionary grants to support the training of employed workers as well as encourage employers to expand such training, in order to improve the overall productivity of the economy and address skills imbalances in the workforce and labour market. The Department is required in terms of the Skills Development Act to enter into Service Level Agreements with SETAs to ensure that goals enunciated in the NSDS III are implemented, including but not limited to skilling the workforce, monitored on a quarterly basis. All SETAs directly respond to the sector skills priorities, which are derived from the Sector Skills Plans. The Sector Skills Plans are developed using information received from the respective sector stakeholders hence, training interventions implemented by SETAs address skills that the country requires. I promulgated a national list of occupations in high demand on 4 November 2014 through Government Gazette No. 38174.

(c) Yes, SETAs are implementing PIVOTAL learning programmes as directed, amongst others, by the SETA Grant Regulations regarding monies received by a SETA and related matters, as published on 3 December 2012, which includes but is not limited to offering bursaries to learners at Universities, and Technical and Vocational Education and Training colleges leading to part or full qualifications as recognised nationally, i.e. learnerships, internships, artisanship, work integrated learning, amongst others.

2. Whilst the SETA system has contributed positively in addressing challenges of skills development in the country, I have been upfront and on record in acknowledging the challenges facing the SETA system, hence I am in the process of reviewing the SETA system in accordance with the White Paper for Post-School Education and Training, NDP and other relevant government strategic policy documents.



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