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29 March 2019 | Story Lacea Loader

No deregistration of students at the University of the Free State (UFS) will be effected until after the Financial Appeals Committee has concluded its process on 5 April 2019.

During a meeting between the university management and the Institutional Student Representative Council (ISRC) today, the following agreement was reached:

  1. The date for the submission of appeals has been extended to Tuesday 2 April 2019 at 12:00. No further extension will be given. The application form for the Financial Appeals Committee has previously been sent to the ufs4life email addresses of all provisionally registered students.
  2. Students who have appealed their National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) outcomes will not be deregistered while awaiting the result of the outcome of their appeal.
  3. Verified final-year students who are provisionally registered will not be deregistered. This will be subject to verification by the Financial Appeals Committee. These students must also submit an appeal.
  4. All other categories of students must submit their appeals to the Financial Appeals Committee.

NB: The documentation mentioned above must be submitted to the Student Finance Office as indicated on the financial appeals form sent to students via their ufs4life email address.

The UFS has taken a pro-poor approach to assist students who are academically deserving. With this approach, the university’s fee structure is much less than that of many public institutions of higher learning in the country. Senior students are also supported through a provisional registration process that grants them the opportunity to pay a reduced amount in order to register, enabling them to fully participate in all activities while extension is provided to secure the necessary funding for their studies.

The university has made a number of concessions to ensure that students are not financially excluded during the 2019 academic year. Many of these concessions were raised by the ISRC on behalf of students and was agreed upon by the university management.  

These concessions include:

  1. Students who have confirmed NSFAS funding for 2019 with historic debt, are to secure registration. This has taken place before the announcement on 24 March 2019 by the Minister of Higher Education and Training, Naledi Pandor, that the historic debt of NSFAS students will be settled by the department.

     

  2. Students in the missing middle who received a gap grant in 2018, have been assisted to pay a lesser amount to register fully for 2019.

     

  3. Students with historic debt who are not receiving the gap grant have also been assisted to register for 2019. Acceptable payment plans for these students have been agreed upon with the university’s Student Finance Office.

     

  4. First-time entering students were assisted with a reduced first payment to enable them to register for 2019.

     

  5. Final-year students with historic debt of less than R20 000 who could not have been assisted in any of the above concessions explained above were allowed to register.

     

  6. Students who are provisionally registered and who could not find the necessary financial means, had the opportunity to submit appeals to the Financial Appeals Committee by 29 March 2019 to secure their registration. This committee comprises representatives of the university management, as well as members of the ISRC. This committee is scheduled to meet on 5 April 2019.

The above is evidence of the multi-layered efforts by the university to support academic deserving students as far as it is practically possible in order to avoid financial exclusion. Additionally, the university’s Student Finance Office has since the beginning of the academic year communicated extensively on the process with students who are at risk of being deregistered.  

Historically, less than 0,5% of registered students at the UFS are not able to find the necessary means to secure their registration.

To support students in their academic efforts, all matters pertaining to registration should be concluded by the end of the first term. A cut-off date is set by which all registration processes – including concessions – are to be concluded. This date – 31 March 2019 – has already been set in 2018, which is the result of consultation with all relevant stakeholders, including the IRSC.

This cut-off date has now been extended to Tuesday 2 April 2019 at 12:00.

Released by:

Lacea Loader (Director: Communication and Marketing)
Telephone: +27 51 401 2584 | +27 83 645 2454
Email: news@ufs.ac.za | loaderl@ufs.ac.za
Fax: +27 51 444 6393



News Archive

UFS satisfied with proceedings of EFF National People’s Assembly
2014-12-17

The University of the Free State (UFS) is happy about another successful hosting of a political party; this time, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF). In the recent past (December 2012), the UFS hosted the African National Congress (ANC) with the same energy, support and selfless commitment as with the EFF.

“The fact that the EFF paid the required amount for the use of the university’s venues in full before the congress commenced, bears testimony to this. For the past two months, the UFS’s working team worked closely with the EFF’s logistics team to thoroughly plan for a smooth and successful National People’s Assembly,” says Dr Choice Makhetha, Acting Rector of the UFS.

The hard work and commitment invested in the preparation process paid off. The 1st EFF National People’s Assembly, held 13-16 December 2014 on the Bloemfontein Campus, was a huge success.

“It is with great excitement that I can report that all premises of the UFS have been left the way they were found on arrival; no damage to any property and no littering.”

“Thank you to the UFS staff members who worked selflessly on a daily basis: the cleaning staff who started very early in the morning and went home very late at night; garden staff who made sure that the grounds were exceptionally clean every day and the flowers bright; student volunteers who worked shifts of over 24 hours on the first day, making sure that EFF delegates were checked into residences; staff members at the Visitors Centre who were ready to share information about the university and provide support to EFF delegates; staff members at the Odeion (which served as media centre) who ensured that the national and international media houses were comfortable and that the media conferences ran smoothly; safety and security personnel who provided protection for all the people on campus and also ensuring safety of the buildings; the health and safety officers supported by our partners from ER24 emergency services; and the South African Police Services (SAPS). To the electricians, the plumbers and other colleagues from Physical Resources who assisted with any task, even beyond the call of duty, we say thank you. For all the support and extra miles travelled – we appreciate your passion for the work you do; you are all very important to us at the UFS.”

“As the University of the Free State, we would like to express our gratitude to the leadership of the EFF, the delegates, guests and partners, as well as the media houses. The level of discipline among delegates was impressive. The UFS staff members appreciate the level of professionalism and respect shown by the EFF leadership and delegates. All the best for the future!,” says Dr Makhetha.

The UFS will continue to host political parties, interest groups, associations and more in their diversity, provided there is availability of venues, events are held outside the academic period and payment is received well ahead of hosting. As a public institution of higher learning, the university has a responsibility to promote democracy and help deepen the principles thereof. A university is a perfect platform for differing views and diverse political formations to find expression.

“To the UFS community, thank you for the trust you showed in the working team as it prepared to host the EFF’s 1st National People’s Assembly. To Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality and the Free State Province – we appreciate the support. As the University of the Free State, we know we can always count on you!”, says Dr Makhetha.  

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