The Ministry of Education Skills and Development has issued a Press Release notifying the public on the 2016/2017 Sponsorship process. The statement reads as follows:
1. In February 2016, the HRDC wrote to DTEF advising on the priority programs and provided the Indicative Skills Information Booklet which spells out requisite skills areas and relevant programs.
2. The process thus effected as follows:
a). February 2016: release of BGCSE results, HRDC list of priority programs for 2016/2017, draft quota allocation across programs and Institutions, consultative meetings with stakeholders including tertiary institutions and those responsible for identifying and assessing the OVCs, RACs, SEN.
b). Ministry released the Top Achiever Scholarship Advertisement on the 9th March 2016
c). The Botswana Human Resource Development Skills Fair took place from 14th to 19th March 2016 and Tertiary Institution carried out massive marketing at the fair to attract applicants into their programs including those that were not in the HRDC priority list and thus not attracting Government Sponsorship.
d). On 21st March 2016, the Ministry met with its regulatory Parastatals (BQA, HRDC) to discuss the 2016/2017 budget allocation and its implications on quotas and programs as well as consultations with Institutions
e). The quota allocations were finalized and distributed to Institutions between 4th and 8th April 2016 to inform their decisions and advertisements.
3. Institutions however advertised (to run in April and May 2016) all their programs with a conviction that the Government is not the sole sponsor and thus they were at liberty to admit and enroll self-sponsored students. The Ministry’s understanding is that the University of Botswana, like all other institutions, has always advertised all its programs irrespective of the source of funding and the 2016/2017 process is no different.
4. All Institutions released their advertisements to run during the months of April-June and for some into July while the DTEF released its advertisement end of April 2016 to run as follows (Botswana Daily News of 4th May, 23rd May and:
a). 29th April to 20th May for programs commencing in May 2016
b). 29th April to 30th June for programs commencing in July/August 2016.
5. The processing of sponsorship offer letters at the DTEF is therefore in progress and Institutions have been informed and are therefore expected to communicate the same to their students.
The University Of Botswana Situation.
1. The University of Botswana is fully aware of the position of not sponsoring non-priority programs which include BBA Marketing, BBA Management, Business Information Systems, Bed Adult Education, Diploma in Adult Education, BA Humanities, BA Chinese Studies, BA Pastoral Studies, Diploma in Library and Information Studies, BIS Computer Information Systems, BSc Information Technology, Diploma in Population Studies, Diploma in Social Work.
2. The programs listed above have attracted a total of 279 Applicants and the UB Management was advised by Ministry to encourage the 279 Applicants to opt for programs that qualify for government sponsorship and have not overshot their allocated quotas.
The Ministry wishes to note that the University of Botswana was given a quota of 3205 including 300 for PGDE. The institution has not been able to attract enough candidates to meet the quota. As at 5th August 2016, UB has received 2089 applicants.
It is also apparent that while Private Tertiary Institutions advise their potential applicants of the programs qualifying for Government sponsorship in their advertisement, some public institutions including UB do not advise their applicants on the same and this may lead to applicants assuming that all the UB programs are Government sponsored. The Ministry wishes to remind all applicants that all sponsorship advertisements clearly indicated programs and candidates eligible for Government sponsorship.