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Education & Skills Development News

New approach needed to improve SA’s labour-absorption potential 

By: Terence Creamer     27th November 2009 There is no disputing that chronically high unemployment and deteriorating income inequality are South Africa’s two most pressing challenges. There is also no disputing that government’s expanded public works programme (EPWP), while an important stop gap, is simply insufficient to deal with these... 

New centre aims to stimulate interest in science, engineering and technology 

By: Jacqueline Holman     27th November 2009 Career doors have been opened for young people with the establishment of a laboratory at the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre, in Newton, Johannesburg, to encourage their interest in science, maths, engineering and technology. 

Toolmaker training programme to be launched in January 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      23rd November 2009 The first tool, die and mould (TDM) pre-apprentice orientation programme, which formed part of measures to deal with the “drastic” skills shortage in the TDM sector – a key support sector for South Africa’s manufacturing industry – would be launched at seven pilot sites across the country in... 

Varsity studies whether maths is still a good indicator of academic ability 

By: Jacqueline Holman     20th November 2009 The University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) is researching students’ underperformance at university, especially in economics. The research aims to discover whether admissions requirements have been set at the correct level and to what extent the new National Senior Certificate (NSC) matric... 

Land Bank teams up with Masisizane to grow agriculture sector 

By: Chanel de Bruyn     18th November 2009 Old Mutual’s Masisizane development finance fund and the Land Bank on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to collaborate their efforts to ensure growth in the agricultural sector and to create sustainable jobs, particularly in South Africa’s rural areas. Land Bank CEO Phakamani... 

Higher Education to extend Seta licensing, to review systems

By: Esmarie Iannucci     4th November 2009 The Department of Higher Education and Training on Wednesday reported that it would Gazette the one-year extension of the current sector education and training authority (Seta) licensing process, from March 2010 to March 2011, following a consultation period, while also conducting a review of the... 

Job cuts at Sappi’s Mandeni factory limited to 11 – Solidarity

By: Esmarie Iannucci     2nd November 2009 Trade union Solidarity on Monday reported that 92% of the planned retrenchments at paper and pulp producer Sappi’s Mandeni factory, in Richards Bay, had been saved during a Section 189 consultation process. In its initial retrenchment notice, Sappi planned to retrench 140 of its employees at... 

Corruption not only a public sector problem – Vavi

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th October 2009 The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) secretary general Zwelinzima Vavi said it would be a “fatal mistake” for the business community to see corruption as a problem which only affected the public sector. “The private sector is deeply implicated as well, with millions of rands being... 

Industry challenged, but growth expected

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     30th October 2009 Specialists in the transport and storage of hazardous goods Stobel Warehousing & Distribution says that, while the warehousing and storage industry is taking strain as a result of the recession, it believes that the industry has started showing signs of improvement and will be healthy again. 

Rural sugar cane farmer development programme launched

By: Darren Parker     30th October 2009 The World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) and the South African Sugar Association (Sasa) have made public their partnering in a project to help small-scale rural farmers in the Amatikulu catchment to improve their sugarcane yields while reducing the negative environmental impacts through the... 

Durban to host first world soya bean research conference on African soil in 2013

By: Darren Parker     23rd October 2009 The city of Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, has won the bid to host the 2013 World Soybean Research Conference (WSRC) to be held at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre.  

Programme launches in bid to deepen SA’s nonexecutives pool

By: Darren Parker     23rd October 2009 In an effort to help widen the pool of South African skilled nonexecutives, a mentorship programme was launched in the country this month that will see some of the its top chairpersons and chief executives, as well as a number of international top executives, lending their expertise as mentors to... 

SA is not exploiting the benefits of skilled migration - CDE  

22nd October 2009 South Africa's migration policy should focus on the interest of its citizens, rather than the interest of immigrants and refugees, a think tank said on Thursday. The country had to become more welcoming to skilled immigrants and had thus far neither managed the costs, nor exploited the benefits,... 

Nzimande calls on employers to provide training for FET students 

By: Chanel de Bruyn     20th October 2009 Further Education and Training (FET) colleges, with the support of government, the Department of Higher Education and Training and the provincial education departments, had to make every effort to “mobilise employers” to provide work placement opportunities for FET students, Higher Education and... 

US invests $6,7m in SA’s FET colleges 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      19th October 2009 The United States Diplomatic Mission to South Africa has partnered with the Higher Education and Training department in a $6,7-million (about R50-million) programme to strengthen academic programmes, skills development training and student support services at 12 local Further Education and... 

BEE remains elusive for most historically disadvantaged South Africans – KPMG

By: Darren Parker     9th October 2009 After 15 years of democracy in South Africa, black economic empowerment remains elusive for the majority of black South Africans, auditing firm KPMG restructuring advisory MD Sandile Hlophe said this week, following the release of KPMG’s latest national black economic-empowerment (BEE) survey. 

Parliamentary committee exploring possibility of
building varsities in Limpopo, Northern Cape

By: Darren Parker     9th October 2009 Parliament is exploring the possibility of establishing new universities in the two provinces that lack such institutions, announced Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Higher Education and Training chairperson Marius Fransman, last month. 

SA executive-pay growth moderates as economy comes off the boil 

By: Terence Creamer     6th October 2009 Difficult market conditions resulted in "reasonably low" executive-pay increases in 2009 relative to 2008, the Mabili ‘Directors Remuneration Report for 2009', which was released on Tuesday, shows. The median CEO package increased 11,6% from R4,7-million to R5,3-million, while increases enjoyed... 

Migrant workers vital for economic recovery - UNDP

By: Reuters     5th October 2009 The global economic crisis has reduced the role of migrant workers, but that is likely to change dramatically as developed countries face a shortfall in workers over the next four decades, a UN report said on Monday. Demand for migrants will return when economic revival is underway, offering... 

SA’s overall employment situation still negative – Adcorp

By: Creamer Media Reporter      29th September 2009 The overall employment situation in South Africa was still negative, although there were some initial signs that the negative trend might be bottoming out, staffing solutions group Adcorp Holdings reported on Tuesday. Adcorp’s Employment Index (AEI) showed an overall third-quarter decline of... 

KZN company under way with R6m lifts contract

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     25th September 2009 Southern African consultants in the elevators industry KZN Elevator Consultants has been awarded a contract valued at R6-million to modernise eight lifts for a property owners and management company. 

Research should have an eye to commercialisation

By: Darren Parker     25th September 2009 The absence of innovation spells certain death for industry, Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Derek Hanekom said at the opening of the 2009 Advanced Manufacturing Technology Strategy (AMTS) annual symposium, in Midrand, last week. 

Still too few companies are dealing proactively with HIV/Aids

By: Darren Parker     25th September 2009 Only 45% of large South African businesses have an official HIV/Aids policy, said Swaziland sugar company Ubombo Sugar chief medical officer Dr Tim Nunn at Africa’s largest annual occupational risk management conference and exhibition, the Noshcon conference, at the end of August. 

Brewing giant seeks to tap new markets, ingredients, supply-chains with ‘home-brew’ alternative

By: Darren Parker     25th September 2009 For many Africans living outside of South Africa, buying a cold beer at the end of a long day is not a realistic option, owing to the fact that industrially produced, quality-assured beer is prohibitively expensive. 

Scholarship programme to enable 
young SA engineers to be trained in Japan

By: Darren Parker     18th September 2009 The South African Department of Science and Technology (DST), in association with Japanese technology corporation Hitachi, has launched a new scholarship training programme for South African engineers in Japan, beginning this month. 

SA must focus on ‘critical’ elements of BEE to speed up implementation – KPMG  

By: Chanel de Bruyn     17th September 2009 The seven elements of the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI’s) Codes of Good Practice on broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE) should be rationalised to four, audit, tax, and advisory firm KPMG proposed on Thursday. With the release of the results of the advisory firm’s 2009 BEE... 

Parliament calls on Nzimande to advance long-term skills strategy  

By: Creamer Media Reporter      16th September 2009 The chairperson of Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Higher Education and Training, Marius Fransman, on Wednesday called on Higher Education Minister Dr Blade Nzimande to “advance” a long-term strategy for skills development among the youth. The committee wanted Nzimande to put plans for... 

Economic crisis makes raising awareness of saving a priority

By: Darren Parker     11th September 2009 South African Savings Institute (Sasi) chairperson Elias Masilela says that the financial crisis has assisted in elevating the importance of saving and the need for financial literacy, not only in South Africa, but the world over. 

Educator of the Year Awards finds its winners

By: Darren Parker     4th September 2009 Telecommunications company Telkom’s corporate social responsibility wing, the Telkom Foundation, announced the winners of its Maths, Science and Technology Educator of the Year Awards at the end of August. 

ArcelorMittal SA to meet unions over short-time work hours 

By: Esmarie Iannucci     28th August 2009 Steel giant ArcelorMittal South Africa on Friday confirmed that it would meet with labour unions Solidarity, the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa, and the United Association of South Africa (Uasa) during next week to discuss the short-time working hours. This came after Uasa on... 

Merseta unveils R80m assistance plan to prevent manufacturing retrenchments

By: Esmarie Iannucci     26th August 2009 The Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Sector Education and Training Authority (Merseta) on Wednesday launched an R80-million Retrenchee Assistance Plan (Rap), which it said was in line with the government’s bid to stem the loss of jobs in the current economic downturn. “This... 

Progress slow in achieving employment equity 

By: Sapa     24th August 2009 An amendment to the Employment Equality Act to penalise companies not abiding by racial diversification in the workplace was recommended to the labour department on Monday. The government's approach of persuasion was not having the desired effect and black and coloured people were bearing the... 

Sessa hoping to ‘plant the seeds of education’ with new youth initiative

By: Christy van der Merwe     19th August 2009 The Sustainable Energy Society of Southern Africa (Sessa) will launch its ‘Young Sessa’ division at the International Solar Energy Society (ISES) 2009 World Solar Congress, which it is co-hosting in October. Sessa will also launch its own ‘Sessa Green Certificate’, which will allow companies,... 

Crime and violent protests harm business confidence in SA

By: Chanel de Bruyn     14th August 2009 The increased “belligerence on the part of labour”, violent service delivery protests, as well as the increase in cash-in-transit heists in South Africa, was “substantially” harming confidence in the business environment, the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) reported on... 

Dinaledi Schools initiative boosts maths, science pass rates 

By: Leandi Kolver     14th August 2009 Although government has identified mathematics and science as key school focus subjects to reach its education development goals - and mathematics has been made a compulsory subject in the general, further education and training bands to increase pass rates in the subject, continuing low pass... 

Engineering, medicine most appealing technical career choices  

By: Leandi Kolver     14th August 2009 Last week was National Science Week, and Engineering News took the liberty to speak to one of the 500 Dinaledi project school’s, to get to hear what its top science and math students see in their future. Jeppe Girls High school top science and math students Jessica Hill, Rechel Govender, Malikah... 

German company donates equipment to Soweto training centre 

By: Darren Parker     14th August 2009 German drainage company MEA Drainage Systems has donated a set of Meadrain drainage systems and equipment, to the value of R50 000, including tran, to the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s SA-German Training Services’ (SAGTS) Builders Training Centre (BTC), in Soweto. 

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