Community Education and Training in South Africa

image of Community Education and Training in South Africa

Adult learning systems play a crucial role in helping people adapt to the changing world of work and develop relevant skills. Community Education and Training has been brought forward as a possible way to foster adult learning in South Africa, especially among disadvantaged groups. South Africa has a relatively large group of adults who have low levels of education and skills, and limited opportunities for skills development. This report looks at the potential role that Community Education and Training could play in South Africa, how the system should be financed, how to align the training offer with community needs, and how to ensure high-quality provision. The report provides international good practise examples and suggests actions that South African stakeholders might consider to develop the Community Education and Training system.



Executive summary

Unemployment in South Africa remains persistently high, especially for low-skilled youth and adults. Upper secondary education (i.e. the National Senior Certificate) has become a minimum requirement for many jobs, and employers are looking for workers with strong cognitive and technical skills. While educational attainment is on the rise in South Africa, many students still leave initial education without an upper secondary degree. Today, around 19 million South African adults, or 57% of the South African adult population, do not have an upper secondary degree. At the same time, opportunities for adults to participate in training after leaving initial education are scarce. There is a strong need for more and better second chance education and training opportunities for adults who are in need of up-skilling or re-skilling to gain sustained access to jobs.


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