The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) is proud to release its 2021 funding status report to the public. This report aims to provide stakeholders with an update on the 2021 NSFAS Funding Programme to support approved students studying at public universities and TVET colleges.
It covers areas such as the 2021 application status update, allowances paid to institutions to date, appeals, and some of the challenges the entity has had to confront in ensuring that every confirmed funded student is paid the right amounts and on time. The report also provides a breakdown of the funding allocation to each institution. The entity commits to provide such updates to the sector and the public as part of strengthening and improving communication.
Despite the many challenges experienced at the start of the 2021 academic year, due to expected higher demand for NSFAS funding and the need to ensure budget adequacy before finalising the allocations, the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) response has addressed the anticipated shortfall, and the Scheme is confident that all students who are deserving of the funding will be funded.
To date, NSFAS has received and processed registration data from both colleges and universities and is continually making payments for students who have been confirmed as funding eligible.
The Scheme has identified a few exceptions related to non-compliance to the DHET Rules and Guidelines in as far registration data that is not aligned to funded qualifications. For these, NSFAS is engaging institutions to rectify and ensure that students are registered on funded qualifica¬tions.
Despite this progress, there are still challenges around the NSFAS wallet blockages. Fraudulent activities have been noted and NSFAS continues to make students aware of the importance of profile management to manage this risk and report any abnormal activities on their accounts.
NSFAS intends to resolve any exceptions within the 2021 programme cycle as it will soon start to prepare for the 2022 application cycle.