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Plans for Dealing With Budget Cuts at NSFAS



Plans for Dealing With Budget Cuts at NSFAS

Plans for dealing with budget cuts at NSFAS. Due to budget cuts, funding for the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) will be reduced for university students, causing concerns about a potential decline in the number of recipients.

NSFAS Budget Overview

The initially projected budget for NSFAS in 2024/2025 was R41.9 billion, increasing to R43.7 billion in the following year. Between 2024 and 2025, additional R9.7 billion and R10 billion will be allocated to Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Colleges.

Comprehensive Funding for Working-Class Students

NSFAS aims to maximize the funds allocated by providing comprehensive financial support to students from working-class families. Eligibility for the bursary is based on a household income not exceeding R350,000.

Impact of Fiscal Containment

National Treasury has enforced budget cuts across government departments, including the reduction of R13.7 billion for tertiary education. This has raised concerns about potential cuts to NSFAS bursaries among students.

NSFAS Funding Criteria Amidst Uncertainty

The NSFAS assures students that the funding criteria remain unchanged, but the official Eligibility Criteria and Conditions for Funding have yet to be published. Students fear the criteria may change, making them ineligible for NSFAS support.


NSFAS Responds to Budgetary Constraints

Ishmael Mnisi, NSFAS spokesperson, acknowledges the impact of budget cuts on higher education. Despite the challenges, measures will be implemented to mitigate shortfalls, including strategic budgeting and optimizing reserves.

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Possible Reduction in Beneficiaries

There is a possibility that NSFAS might reduce the number of students funded, potentially falling below the current 1.1 million. Ineligible students will not be funded in order to prevent losses.

Maintaining Comprehensive Funding

The NSFAS maintains comprehensive funding for deserving students. This includes registration fees, tuition, textbooks, living allowance fees, personal care, transportation, and housing.

NSFAS 2024 Applications

In November 2023, NSFAS funding applications for the 2024 academic year opened. The scheme provides information on application deadlines, ensuring transparency for applicants.


NSFAS remains steadfast in its commitment to comprehensive student funding. While challenges persist, efforts to safeguard education opportunities for deserving students showcase NSFAS’s resilience and dedication to bridging financial gaps in higher education.

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