Higher Education and Training

National Department Budget for 2016-17

Vote purpose

Develop and support a quality higher and vocational education sector. Promote access to higher and vocational education and skills development training opportunities.


The Department of Higher Education and Training derives its mandate from the following pieces of legislation:

  • the Higher Education Act (1997), which provides for a unified and national system of higher education

  • the National Student Financial Aid Scheme Act (1999), which provides for the granting of loans and bursaries to eligible students attending public higher education and training institutions, and the subsequent administration of such loans and bursaries

  • the Continuing Education and Training Colleges Act (2006), which provides for the regulation of continuing education and training, the establishment of governance structures and the funding of public technical and vocational education and training colleges and community education and training colleges, the registration of private colleges, and the promotion of quality in continuing education and training

  • the Skills Development Levies Act (1999), which provides for the imposition of skills development levies

  • the Skills Development Act (2008), which enables the creation of the National Skills Agency, the establishment of the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations, and the regulation of apprenticeships, learnerships and other matters relating to skills development

  • the National Qualifications Framework Act (2008), which provides for the national qualifications framework, the South African Qualifications Authority and the quality councils, for the issuing and quality assurance of qualifications required on the sub-frameworks of the national qualifications framework.

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