To: MQA STAKEHOLDERS
From: Mr Thapelo Madibeng, Learning Programmes Manager
Date: 31 July 2008
MQA BOARD DECISION ON THE NON-RECOGNITION OF THE TECHNICAL MATRIC FOR PURPOSES OF ACCESSING TRADE TESTING
The Mining Industry Engineering Trades Training Board (MIETTB) meeting held on 06 May 1998 took a decision that only under special circumstances will exemptions be granted for people who do not have N2 but qualified with a standard ten technical qualification and a Trade Theory subject. The special circumstances were at the time defined to include apprentice contracts that were about to expire and any other circumstances deemed by the then Accreditation Committee of the ITB as valid.
The reasons for not recognising the std 9 and 10 technical qualification as equivalent to N2 and N3 was based on the fact that the Trade Theory offered by the Technical High Schools was deemed to be at a lower level to that of the Nated Courses.
This decision was communicated to the industry on 27 May 1998 and has been implemented since then. The transfer of the liabilities from the ITBs to the MQA means that this is now a decision of the MQA Board. On the 14 March 2008, the MQA Learnerships Committee revisited this ITB decision after a request by the Mining and Minerals industry training providers as articulated in the paragraph below.
PHASING OUT OF THE NATED COURSES AND CURRRENT SUPPLY CONSTRAINTS OF PROSPECTIVE LEARNERS WITH N2
Nated Courses provides the underpinning theoretical knowledge required for the apprenticeship and Learnership artisan route. The Department of Education (DoE) took a decision to phase out these Nated Courses without providing the guidelines of what these courses would be replaced with. In 2007, N1 was phased out of the Further Education and Training (FET) College curriculum and N2 is being phased out in 2008 and N3 will be phased out in 2009. Consequently, the apprenticeship and learnership artisan routes exist but have no FET College support to register the learners.
To this end, FET Colleges are no longer offering these subjects for new Learners except those that are currently employed by the industry. The N1 and N2 are requirements for Section 13 and Section 28 Apprentices who want to access a Trade Test in terms of the gazetted conditions of Apprenticeships.
The Mining and Minerals Sector training providers expressed a need to the MQA to recruit unemployed Learners to train as Artisans in the identified critical and scarce skills through the Learnerships and Apprenticeship route. They indicated that the non delivery of the Nated courses by the FET Colleges is creating a constraint as they can no longer access a pool of candidates with the required N2 qualification.
DECISION BY MQA BOARD
At its meeting of 30 July 2008, the MQA Board decided to reverse the decision made by the MIETTB to recognise the Standard 10 Technical Qualification with the relevant Trade Theory for exemption to candidates who did not have the N2 qualification. By implication candidates with a Standard 9 Technical Qualification with the relevant Trade Theory would also be exempted if they did not have the N1 qualification.
CONDITIONS OF THE DECISION
The above decision will be reviewed within a period of a year to assess its relevance and need.
The decision must be implemented effective from 1 August 2008 to 1 August 2009.
The decision constitutes an arrangement until a permanent solution on the replacement of nated courses is found by the MQA and the industry.
LEARNING PROGRAMMES MANAGER