ADMISSION requirements for admission to the NSSC Advanced Subsidiary Level have been revised to assist school leavers to access further education.
The Minister of Education, Arts, and Culture, Esther Anna Nghipondoka, during a special briefing gave a concise layout of the revised plan to assist learners.
Minister Nghipondoka’s statement reads as follows:
This afternoon, I wish to inform the Nation the admission requirements for Advanced Subsidiary as well as on other pathways for school leavers.
From the onset I want to make it clear that the main aim for this new curriculum is to open pathways and be more responsive to the developmental needs of the Nation. With that in mind the Executive of the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture analysed the performance of the new NSSC-Ordinary level candidates, and revisited the requirement for admission to AS.
We need to keep in mind that the Advanced Subsidiary curriculum is benched marked against the Cambridge International Advanced Subsidiary (AS) level. That means it builds onto the recognized NSSC-Ordinary and aims to develop further in-depth subject content. AS is seen as the pre-university course that fosters higher order thinking skills, independent critical thinking, application of knowledge and understanding, to new and familiar learning content as well as handling and analyzing different forms of information, sources of information, structuring coherent arguments, evaluating, judgement, and decision making skills.
The admission requirements for learners to proceed to AS level were adjusted as follows:
1. Candidates who would like to enrol for Advanced Subsidiary must take a minimum of 3 but not more than 5 subjects of the subjects done on NSSC-Ordinary level,
2. In order for a meaningful articulation to institutions of higher learning (after successful completion of AS), English must be included amongst the candidate’s five best subjects at Ordinary level,
3. If a D symbol in English at Ordinary level was obtained, the learner is allowed to take English at AS level and would be allowed to only take three more subjects at AS level, in order to have more time to improve on English,
4. A learner can proceed to AS level if they obtained two C-symbols or better and the remaining three subjects must be D-symbols, which should include English.
Following this minimum requirement of three subjects with C’s in subjects that are offered at AS and the concession of one of these subjects to be a D, the manual analysis of the results show that approximately seven thousand five hundred and eighteen (7 518) of a total of twenty-one thousand one hundred and seven (21 107) NSSC-Ordinary level candidates, that is a total of 35.6 % qualify to take up at least three subjects on AS level.
One hundred and nineteen (119) schools are offering Advanced Subsidiary (AS) which consists of 95 public and 24 private schools.
Regional Education Directorates have been provided with results of these candidates by way of Broadsheets. The Regional Offices in collaboration with the Circuit Inspectors and Schools Admission Committee should do the placement of the successful candidates to proceed to Advanced Subsidiary schools.
Depending on the availability of space at schools, NSSC-Ordinary level school leavers of the revised curriculum who are 18 years and younger by the 31st December 2021, and who will not meet the minimum requirements for AS, and still wish to improve their results in 2021 can be allowed to repeat the NSSC-O on a full-time basis. This should be done with full understanding and acknowledge that they would give up the achievement of the 2020 results.
It is thus advised that in cases where there are only one, two, or three subjects underperformed, it is better to take these up on a part-time basis at registered and accredited institutions, after which a qualifying student will still enrol in AS full time, provided that the improvement of subjects is done within two years.
The following can be noted:
1. Most university degree programmes in areas of medicine, engineering, education etc. in Namibia or SADC countries and internationally can only be accessed with a minimum of 3 or 4 relevant subjects on NSSC-Higher level or NSSC-Advanced Subsidiary level as required by a specific programme;
2. Certain programmes and courses offered by Institutions of Higher Learning both public and private, require only achievement at NSSC-Ordinary level, be it within the legacy or the revised curriculum.
There are different possible streams for school leavers who did not qualify for Advanced Subsidiary level; as this revised curriculum aims to open more pathways than the academic white-collar career paths and thereby creating a skilled workforce who can propel the country to a level of an industrialised knowledge-based economy, developed by its own people.
3. Thus learners who did not qualify for universities or Advanced Subsidiary level may decide on the following pathways:
3.1. Improve their grades in part-time tuition and examination centres registered with the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture.
3.2. Enroll with Further Education and Training Institutions such as Vocational Training Colleges (VTCs) as registered with the NTA to which they are required to apply in advance.
The Namibia Qualifications Authority (NQA) has a detail list of Namibian Institutions and programmes that are accredited. Namibians should be aware of registered training institutions and programmes.
4. Quality Career options can also be explored in specific vocational, technical and professional education courses offered by institutions such as the National Institute of Technology (NIT).
5. Furthermore there are the technical institutions of the Namibian Institute of Mining and Technology offering Technical Vocational Training centres in Arandis, Tsumeb, and Keetmanshoop.
6. The Namibia Community Skills Development Foundation (COSDEF) provides relevant practical skills training that include business skills, entrepreneurship, and life skills to enable young people finding employment in the local economy.
7. Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Service (MSYNS) through its National Youth Service (NYS) conducts skills training programmes.
8. The College of the Arts also offers programmes for pursuing a career in the Arts, such as fashion and design, performing arts, new media design, visual arts, music and radio production.
Namibia Students Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF) is a bursary scheme funded by the Department of Higher Education and Training. The Fund assists students who do not have the financial means to fund their studies and cannot access bank funding, study loans or bursaries. Prospective students can apply online.
Private and public institutions, organisations, agencies and international partners such as UNESCO, European Union, the Common Wealth of Nations and sister countries also avail funding opportunities in key areas of the Human Resource Development Plan.
The Ministry wishes to express its gratitude to all teachers, school leadership and communities for their continued support to learners during the period of transition from the legacy NSSC-Ordinary level curriculum to the revised NSSC-Ordinary level and the new NSSC-Advanced Subsidiary level curriculum. Provision of opportunities for senior secondary graduates requires information and awareness at all levels.
As this year is the first year that we implement the AS level as an opportunity for school leavers to be better prepared for the out of school academic career, we must display tolerance and allow the process to be completed. This includes consolidating the placement of these learners at clustered specialized schools with hostels such that formal teaching and learning can commence as of the 22nd February 2021. This means the school calendar will still be adjusted to compensate for this delay and this will be published in due course.