Suspension of the academic year is something which could have “dire” knock on effects if the Fees Must Fall stand-off is not resolved.
New students who would like to further their studies after graduating from high school in 2016 might be turned away from tertiary institutions in 2017 if the #FeesMustFall crisis continues.
This is according to a report in the Sunday Times, with experts claiming the consequences for a suspended academic year could be “dire”.
There are also concerns about students not being able to complete their degrees in 2016 and many not being able to afford extending their studies into the new year. Analysts also pointed to the dangers for foreign students, whose visas might expire before they can complete their degrees.
University accommodation will also be under pressure if students who were due to graduate in 2016 have to extend their studies. Stellenbosch University education researcher Nic Spaull said the possibility exists that there will not be room for new students.
It is expected that 220 000 students will enter tertiary education in 2017 while there will also be fewer professionals entering the workplace. These professionals include medical interns who play a huge role in easing the pressure on South Africa’s already strained public health system.
University of Limpopo vice-chancellor Mahlo Mokgalong said suspending the academic year would be “one of the most regrettable things that could happen”.
“You’re looking at not having place for 6,000 students who would have come into the university, at a registration upfront payment in the region of R3,000.”