New student aid rules ‘could threaten university finances’

South Africa’s main universities body has warned that new financial aid rules for students, which sparked protests around the country, are causing instability in the sector and pose a threat to university finances, writes Munyaradzi Makoni for Research Professional News.

The warning from Universities South Africa (USAf) on 5 August comes as universities across the country continue to experience student unrest over new rules introduced by the country’s National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) regarding eligibility and payment methods.

This year, NSFAS embarked on a process to defund students found to have been granted support based on incorrect information. To date it has defunded nearly 46,000 recipients. The scheme also stopped paying out support as lump sums to universities in favour of funding students directly and capped accommodation allowances. But this week USAf said these decisions have destabilised the university sector.
Full report on the Research Professional News site