FET Colleges Welcome New Systems

Colleges in Port Elizabeth and Buffalo City that use the FET (further education and training) system plan to implement the ITS Integrator system for improved management and overall institutional efficiency.  The project co-ordinator, Elmarie Bremner, says that the system combines all the spheres of FET, including business, financial reporting, human resources, student administration and the smooth running of the institutions as a whole.
In August this year, the implementation process began with the business process mapping. This involved a consultant visiting the colleges to map out what processes had already been put in place by the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET).
The next step will deal with cliental support and implementation. The system will then be tested in various circumstances. Leaners will then be trained on-site at the colleges; this is called transactional processing. The final systems are due to go live in June 2012. There will be a post implementation support period will make sure the institutions use the system as prescribed.
It was said by Elmarie Bremmer that the colleges using the FET systems will be able to accurately report to the DHET and the city council on their financials, HR and student administration. The two FET colleges will be implementing core systems in student management, student financial management, financial management and HR management, which include personnel management and payroll.
“We have had generous support from the Eastern Cape Education Department and went with their recommendation of ITS as a preferred supplier in the education field,” says PE FET college's Natasha Daysel. “We are well into the planning phase, and look forward to the full implementation,” she says.
Fanie Van Rensburg, at Buffalo City FET, said that they have been looking at ITS for a number of years and that a move to a new database is welcomed. 

By: Octayvia Nance
Posted: 16 October 2011 

Community Centre Enters the Bay

On the 26th August, this Friday, the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s Faculty of Education is launching a Centre for the Community School that they are establishing. This is in response to the challenges that are faced regarding to education. The community centre, which will be located within the faculty, is the first of its kind in the country.  It promises to be an education solution.
The launch will take place at 16:00 at the university’s Missionvale Campus and concerned parents, teachers, principal and others who wish to be apart of it are all welcome. The keynote speaker at the launch is a leading scholar and expert on inequity in America. Professor Pedro Noguera has done research that concentrates on ways in which schools are influenced by social and economic conditions of the communities where they are located. 
The appointed director of the centre is Dr Al Witten and he says one needs to recognize that the answers to society’s most challenging questions lie at the crossroads of many disciplines. The work of the centre is aimed at being cross-disciplinary and inclusive. Expertise and experience will be drawn from a range of other faculties at NMMU, including psychology, health and development studies. Engagement and support from communities are urged.
Dr Witten also says that the centre will focus on development and expansion of knowledge in the base of community schools in the country. He proceeds to say that it will promote the engagement in various efforts to improve teaching and learning and also address some of the social challenges that affect these activities. To build partnerships with parents, community members, and other education stakeholders is said to be important.
The Centre will aim to connect to schools across the province, to identify best practices and develop a research agenda. It also aims to promote and strengthen the work in the school in the Bay. It is also expected serve as a national resource centre that emphasizes on the idea that a community school is credible, replicable and sustainable model for educational improvement in South Africa.

By: Octayvia Nance
Published: 1 September 2011