n South African Journal of Higher Education - The merging of Further Education and Training colleges - challenging factors in three provinces of South Africa

Volume 19, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



The workplace of today is characterized by global competition, cultural diversity, technological and management processes that require people to think critically, solve problems and communicate effectively. This requires a well-founded Further Education and Training system. The researchers have indicated that the provision of vocational training under apartheid, that is, prior to 1994, was characterized by unequal access to learning opportunities based on the vestiges of legal, financial and other distinctions between formerly advantaged and disadvantaged institutions (Department of Education 2001, 9). The National Department of Education decided to merge the above institutions in attempt to remove the aforementioned vestiges. Education systems do not, however, just change because there is a change in the government, but the existing structures and vested interests, material constraints and the interplay of competing ideologies do warrant changes in education systems (McGregor and McGregor 1992, 17). At the same time, education transformation goes hand in glove with political transformation as a result of the shift in the balance of political power (African National Congress 1994, 3). However, education is a fundamental process, which can be expected to reflect the values, principles and practices of a new democratic dispensation at all levels and in all sectors (Nkoe 2002, 129). The article purports to investigate the perceptions of stakeholders on the merging of the Further Education and Training (FET) colleges in bringing about transformation of the South African FET sector. The reform of the FET colleges, which resulted in the formation of the new FET institutional landscape, is seen as a means to address and fulfil the aspirations of the democratic society as set in the preambles of the new legislation, namely, the Further Education and Training Act 98 of 1998, the Skills Development Act 97 of 1998, the South African Qualification Authority Act 57 of 1995 and the Employment Equity Act 55 of 1998. In order to achieve this, the legislation will be examined and the perceptions of the FET colleges' stakeholders will be explored to help achieve this objective.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error