PROVINCIAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT FORUM (PSDF)
The Provincial Skills Development Forums were established to be stakeholders’ platform to address specific provincial needs. They also serve as links between the NSA and the Provinces.
The Skills Development Act 37 of 2008 as amended Chapter 2 subsection 2(x) states that :
(1) Those purposes of the Act are to be achieved [by] through –
(iii) a skills development forum in each Departmental province;
The Provincial Skills Development Forums are seen as catalysts and vehicles for bringing and making an impact on the lives of the people. The PSDF should bring on board role players who look beyond the skills development and training championed by the Department of Higher Education and Training. Beyond skills development must be economic planning, employment creation, identification and placing of unemployed work seekers into formal employment, social development projects and/or income generating opportunities.
The PSDF should also be seen as the ultimate melting pot of national, provincial and local initiatives at political and administrative level. New ingredients to this are the Provincial Growth and Development Strategy, Integrated Development Plans, Integrated Rural Development Strategy (IRDS) and Urban Renewal Strategy (URS), New Growth Path (NGP), Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP), Human Resource Development Strategy (HRDS), Rural Development Strategy, National Development Plan (NDP) and the White Paper on Post-School Education and Training that the PSDF can begin to exploit. These basic strategies emphasize on a coordinated development in the urban areas and the countryside.
The PSDF is an essential link to public expenditure by government and to a new development vision and strategies that have been prioritized in conjunction with communities and other major stakeholders. The PSDF should build close working relationships with organisations located within communities including Universities, Further Education and Training Colleges and community colleges to develop their communities by building on existing knowledge and skills and thereby contribute to building social agency and social cohesion.
Therefore the PSDF is a strategic forum rather than a structure focused on generic issues.
2. THE PROVINCIAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT FORUM (PSDF)
The PSDF should preferably be located and resourced within the Office of the Premier. The Office of the Premier may also delegate the establishment of the PSDF to a relevant department. The PSDF coordinating department may apply for funding to the National Skills Authority for effective coordination and implementation of the PSDF objectives.
2.2.1 Composition of the Provincial Skills Development Forum
The Provincial Skills Development Forum shall consist of up to a maximum of 4 duly appointed constituency members representing-
a. Provincial Office of the Premier.
b. Government departments as per the Provincial priorities
c. Organized labour.
d. Organized business.
e. Coops, Business, Community, Service Providers and The interest of designated groups (youth, women & people with disabilities)
f. All SETAs that may be relevant to the main economic activity in that province (whether provincially based or not).
g. All representatives of the post school education institutions
h. The NSA
2.3 Roles of Provincial Skills Development Forum
The PSDF shall serve as a strategic/advisory body for all skills development & human resource matters in the province.
The PSDF role is to advice the Department of Higher Education (DHET) and the Office of the Premier on matters of skills development in or affecting the Province.
The PSDF must not get involved in project and course selection, including the approval processes.
The primary role is to ensure the alignment of all skills development initiatives with economic and social development strategies of the PDGP which include advice on, but not limited to:
- Skills development for unemployed and underemployed persons
- Job creation projects and strategic projects in particular
- Learnerships. Alignment with provincial economic development strategy/PGDS
- Co-operation with interested bodies.
- Integration of projects with other national, provincial and local initiatives.
- Any other matter pertaining to skills development issues affecting the province or part thereof.
- Facilitate the identification of scarce skills and training needs.
- Contribute to the development of the Provincial Skills Plan
- Endorse, monitor and support evaluation of the Provincial Skills Plan.
- Advise on ways to ensure viability and sustainability of projects.
- Advise on skills development for designated groups.
2.4 PSDFs Areas of focus
Areas of focus includes identification of specific provincial training needs that will positively improve local economy and livelihood, promotion of a culture of quality in all skills development, training and education institutions and to advocate skills development agenda. Indicative focal areas include:
- Foster collaboration and systemic relationship with the SETAs, Public Institutions and other skills development role players,
- In-service training for lecturers through exchange programmes with industry,
- Community engagement and graduate community service
- Provision of work placement for practicing graduates and learners,
- Promotion of skills development symposiums and best practices.
- Advice to the Province, NSA, DHET and other government departments on skills development matters,
- NSA interface with SETAs, other intermediaries, providers and bodies.
- Strengthening of Civil Society
- SMME support initiatives
- NSA, SETA and Provincial Skills development initiatives