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Forging college TVET partnerships: Implications for the post-school education and training system

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Human Resource Development Council (HRDC)


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The purpose of this paper is to propose measures for strengthening and supporting partnerships between Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges and a range of stakeholders. Since the advent of democracy there has been a proliferation of policy outlines that make constant referral to South Africa as a 'developmental state' and the solutions to its structural problems as contained within that ideological paradigm. Closely in step with the developmental state narrative, the Green Paper for Post-School Education and Training (2012) and the subsequent White Paper (2014) labour the point of promoting the growth of strong partnerships between TVET Colleges and employers. However, both policy papers specifically forewarn that 'the possibility of partnerships between public and private institutions should be explored within a clearly defined regulatory framework that sets out the parameters for operation'. It is the contention of this paper that this, indeed, is precisely what is lacking in the TVET college partnership discourse. Three partnership models are discussed: KZN Tooling Initiative; the TVET Consortium Model and the British Council-DHET Leadership Exchange Programme. With this in mind, there is a need for policy clarity from the DHET with specific reference to its stance on TVET college partnerships with public and private sector organisations.

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