CPUT throws in the towel for 2016

2016-10-27 11:44
CPUT. (Tammy Petersen, News24)

CPUT. (Tammy Petersen, News24)

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Cape Town - The Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) has given up on face-to-face classes for the rest of the year, the institution said.

“We have now reached the point of no return to save the 2016 academic year,” acting vice- chancellor Professor Louis Fourie said in an online post on Wednesday, as Fees Must Fall students ran from CPUT city campus to Parliament to protest during the mini-budget.

Fourie said that at a special meeting, the senate executive committee decided that all face-to-face classes on its campuses be suspended for 2016.

Individual faculties and deans would decide if enough work had been completed during the protests to write exams.

Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande’s announcement on September 19 of fee scales for 2017 set off nationwide student unrest. He said tertiary institutions could decide their own increases, up to a maximum of 8%.

Assessment timetables

Students from families with an annual income less than R600 000 would not have fees increased. Protesters said they should not have to pay at all. CPUT announced later it would increase fees for those outside that category by 8%.

Protests at CPUT had included daily marches, flinging faeces, torching vehicles, and setting fire to the entrance of a building from which a security guard narrowly escaped with his life.

Students would get the new assessment timetables and venues soon. Where significant parts of the syllabus were still outstanding and students could not be examined this year, the final assessment would be in the second half of January 2017.

INFOGRAPHIC: Everything you need to know about #FeesMustFall

Students not writing their final assessments in November and December were encouraged to go home for their own safety, Fourie advised.

The faculties would communicate with students on their options. Disabled and foreign students would get advice on how to manage their return home. Most of the foreign students were from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zimbabwe, and Angola.

The residences would close completely for the Christmas period, for a deep-clean for the following academic year.

“We had several fruitful engagements with leaders from the student community and decided more than once on a date to resume classes. Unfortunately this has not been realised until now, quite often due to circumstances beyond our control,” Fourie said.

Vice-chancellor Dr Prins Nevhutalo had been placed on special leave, according to reports earlier this week. More information was not immediately available.

Meanwhile, Rhodes University in Grahamstown, now dubbed the “University Currently Known as Rhodes” (UCKAR), gave students a choice: Carry on with lectures and write exams, or go home until 2017.

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Read more on:    cput  |  cape town  |  university protests  |  education  |  university fees

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