Matthew Lester on #FeesMustFall: Some shocking numbers

Matthew Lester
Matthew Lester

By Matthew Lester*

Every day I am stunned by how little we actually know about the #FeesMustFall crisis. But there is hope. Over time statistics are becoming available that help to illustrate where the problem came from and how we can design interventions that will make a difference in years to come.

Last week StatsSA released a report illustrating some key numbers in the debate. These numbers were supplemented by the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement 2016 that shows the extent of government interventions to tackle the problem.

I am fascinated by these numbers. Here is my preliminary interpretation that comes to the conclusion that there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution.

In as much as there are rich and poor students there are also rich and poor universities. And no broad brush solution is going to fix that.

Your comments are most welcome: m.lester@ru.ac.za.

  • Rhodes University Professor Matthew Lester was educated at St Johns College, Wits and Rhodes universities. He is a chartered accountant who has worked at Deloitte, SARS and BDO. A member of the Davis Tax Committee investigating the structure of aspects of the RSA tax system, he is based in Grahamstown. Follow him @ProfMattLester.

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