Business education

2014-06-24 00:00

PETER Kepler, former Damelin principal and well-known educator in Pietermaritzburg, has put a team together to establish a private FET college that will be operated along business lines.

Kepler said they wish to established the college in Durban and Pietermaritzburg because the absorption rate — of students finding employment after theirs studies — is particularly low at only 12%.

Another reason why youngsters can’t get employment is because they lack experience, so the college would offer a curriculum that consists of 60% work experience, either through an internship or leanership, and 30% tuition in a classroom.

Kepler said the college, to be called “EDU4ALL”, would initially offer a NQF4 business management qualification from August, which he described as the business sector equivalent of a matric. The plan is for the college to accept enrolments every two months.

The college would be different from the government and other privately-owned FET colleges in the two cities in that it would be operated along business lines.

For instance, disciplinary issues among students would be dealt with by formal hearing, as is the case in business. There would be performance incentives.

Students would also be selected and guided in a business incubation programme that would involve establishing colleges in other centres and attracting new students.

The aim is to eventually have a national network of colleges.

Kepler said businesses that participated in the programme would benefit from having interns at notional cost to them, there were tax benefits and the employer could also gain black economic empowerment points for training and education — businesses face more stringent BEE requirements next year when new regulations take effect.

Kepler said the college would appeal to students who wished to further their basic education, those with matric who wanted a business sector equivalent qualification, students who may have dropped out of the first year of university or working people who wished to further their education through learnerships through sector education training authorities.

Kepler said he, marketing director Don De La Rey and financial manager Craig Hughes, first started putting the plans for the college together six months ago — much work had already gone into attaining the accreditation for the curriculum, establishing college facilities and getting a team of facilitators together (who do the teaching).

Kepler said the price for the students to complete the year course, including the internship, would be between R20 000 and R25 000, which he believed to be good value considering it costs at least R60 000 to put a youngster through a matric year at a private school.

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