If you know the first 10 abbreviations/acronyms, you qualify: you are clearly a skills development expert in South Africa 😂😂😂.
Jokes and acronymical overload aside - in a context of growing unemployment, poverty and inequality; demand for high-level skills, skills shortages, and massive youth unemployment; we need to get skills development and related to that, skills planning, right. SETAs, or sectoral educatoin and training authorities, prepare annually updates on their sector skills plans, based on sectoral labour market research and workplace skills plans and reports. In the last years, these SSPs have, apparently, improved in quality. I was involved in research related to the SSP of the public sector ETA; here as a member of the higher education and research chamber of the education, training and development practices SETA, I am still catching up to the work of ETDP SETA and the specific mandate of the HER chamber.
So long, quite a few interesting infos have come from our ETDP SETA HER Chamber workshop of yesterday. Figure 1: What is Skills Planning? And how did the Labour Market Intelligence Project (LMIP) approach the task of developing a skills planning system for SA?
Figure 2 gives an impression of the "skills supply side". What is happening within the schooling and post-schooling system? If 100 learners start at Grade R (pre-Grade 1), how many will get a GETC (Grade 9 completion), or a matric (Grade 12), or make it into higher education and eventually get a higher education certificate, diploma or degree?
The short answer is: 4. In other words, the other 96 percent will not have a (3 year) degree within 6 years of finishing matric. The tragedy is that a degree is basically a guarantee in SA to get a good job; it is a ticket to upward social mobility, and typically means that an entire extended family will benefit and be lifted out of poverty and have opportunities for their young ones because one family member made it. But the number, even with a GER of 19%, is still way too small.
Lastly, what about the demand side of the Labour Market. Where is there employment growth,? Where does value add/growth also lead to significant employment growth? In other words, where can we get 'bang for the buck' in terms of stimulating sectoral growth for enhancing employment? Figure 3 gives an idea: ... financial services, transport, construction, government, public and social services, and manufacturing. The harsh reality: it is not mining, not agriculture, although the latter can certainly provide for self-employment and dignified livelihoods.