NSFAS: Funding for poor students ‘feasible and viable’

NSFAS presented the Ikusasa blue print financial aid programme at the fees commission of inquiry into higher education and training.

FILE: A group of students at the University of Johannesburg protest the lack of Nsfas funding on 27 January 2014. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) says it is viable and feasible to provide sufficient tertiary funding to poor and the so-called missing middle students.

NSFAS has presented the Ikusasa blue print financial aid programme at the Fees Commission of Inquiry into Higher Education and Training in Centurion on Monday afternoon.

The funding model is aimed at supporting students through a combination of grants.

The ministerial task team, which was established by Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande earlier this year to develop and support the funding model for poor and missing middle students, has provided detailed findings.

Task team chairperson Sizwe Nxasana says it is possible to fully support students.

“We have come to the conclusion, as part of the report of the ministerial task team, that it is feasible and finacially viable to do so.”

Nxasana says they have also found a number of sources who can help fund students.

“We can raise money from both the public sector and the private sector.”

The proposed new Ikusasa model, which is expected to come into effect from 2018, will look at addressing some of the challenges faced by the current funding system.

(Edited by Masechaba Sefularo)