In its efforts to generate a full curriculum for the broader spectrum of flooring installation over the last seven years, Flooring Industry Training Association (Fita) has had difficulties with the Quality Council for Trades & Occupations (QCTO), as the qualifications process seemed to take much longer than initially expected.
Extensive research has been done by Fita and the Construction Education Training Authority (Ceta) into the 13 types of flooring applications so that each application would have its own specific curriculum in a qualification. These curriculums have subsequently been filed with the QCTO for registration.
“However, the qualifications have had to be resubmitted to the QCTO a few times, as the council has requested various formats of the application, which delays the process even further,” says Fita chairperson Tandy Coleman.
This has led to a gradual decline in Fita membership numbers, and rendered Fita unable to offer the promised facilitation of training or recognition of prior learning, which made suppliers reluctant to contribute further, she laments.
“The industry is losing faith in Fita’s ability to produce the qualification it has promised.”
Unfortunately, Coleman notes that the industry is not privy to behind-the-scenes work and effort and, therefore, does not see the complexities of Fita’s having to deal with the QCTO, albeit with the assistance and support of Ceta.
Coleman mentions that Ceta’s being placed under administration has even further complicated the process, translating into further delays.
“The CEO with whom we have been meeting to press forward has resigned. We must now start again with a new administrator, which is extremely frustrating.”
She adds that the association is awaiting a meeting with Ceta to discuss the way forward for Fita and Ceta.
Coleman suggests that the association will continue to push forward with the QCTO to complete the accreditation process of the curriculum, but insists that the industry must, meanwhile, continue to support its stakeholders.
She concludes that, as an industry, there is an obligation to try and create jobs, pass on skills and work together for a better South Africa for all.