Exploring the impact of high school scholarships in South Africa
South Africa has huge educational gaps. For many learners and their families (especially those from under-resourced backgrounds), the financial burden of quality education is insurmountable. This is where high school scholarship programmes come in.
Scholarship programmes seek to invest in learners and make high-quality education more affordable and accessible.
For many families, securing access to quality education is paramount for their children to achieve a better future. In this way, scholarships don’t only cover the cost of education, but can actually change the lives of learners.
This is one of the many reasons why we’re launching the UCT Online High School Learning Liberated Scholarship Programme.
Let’s take a look at the various benefits scholarships can bring to your child.
Affordability and access
South Africa’s education sector mirrors the economic inequalities of the country. This means that many schools are unaffordable, and therefore inaccessible, to the majority of South African learners and their families.
What’s more, many of the schools that are recognised for providing a high standard of education charge high school fees. This means that securing quality education for your child usually comes with a huge price tag.
But with a scholarship, your child’s education won’t break the bank. Most scholarships cover some or all of your child’s tuition fees as well as some extras like stationary, textbooks and uniforms.
With a scholarship, your child can also attend schools you may not have otherwise had the funds to send them to. And this can ultimately change the trajectory of their life.
A high school scholarship offers your child increased opportunities when it comes to their tertiary education and future career opportunities.
Access to high quality education in high school can increase chances of attending a tertiary institution, especially for learners from low-income households and communities.
This, in turn, improves career prospects. What’s more, receiving a scholarship can make your child a more competitive candidate for those employers that recognise the accomplishment of being a scholarship recipient.
Because so many high-quality schools in South Africa are only accessible to high-income families, providing scholarships to promising learners from low-income households has become an increasingly prevalent practice.
In this way, scholarships offer one form of educational redress by providing learners with the means to overcome barriers to enrol in schools they otherwise might not have had the economic means to attend.
Providing support systems for scholarship recipients
Many scholarship programmes provide additional assistance for learners (beyond financial support) to help them flourish in a new educational setting.
Many offer learner support programmes that can include things such as workshops and seminars, mentorship, skill development, psycho-social development, academic tutoring and career coaching.
This means that your child will be equipped with important skills to help them make the most of their education.
Recognising learners’ hard work and effort
Last but not least, receiving a scholarship serves as an important marker of your child’s hard work (as most scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic or sporting achievement).
It’s a lovely way to recognise the hard work demonstrated by many young people, who have managed to thrive in sometimes difficult and challenging circumstances.
Find out about your child’s scholarship options
If you're interested in learning about scholarship options for your child, you can consult our handy guide here. We outline all of the high school scholarships available in South Africa.
And remember, UCT Online High School also offers its own scholarship programme, for our online high school. Check out to see if your child qualifies, here.