MATRICULANTS: 3 500 Teaching bursaries up for grabs

Are you considering becoming a teacher? Not sure how to go about it, or what it will cost? Maybe you need some financial assistance.

The Funza Lushaka Bursary Programme is the latest bursary programme for aspiring teachers.

A multi-year programme that promotes teaching in public schools, the full-cost bursaries are available to enable eligible students to complete a full teaching qualification in an area of national priority.

Recipients of these bursaries will be required to teach at a public school for the same number of years that they receive the bursary.

Qualified recipients of the bursary must request placement in a province of their choice.

The Provincial Education Department (PED) concerned will determine whether there is a suitable post available.

If there is not, the applicant may be placed in a PED that does have suitable vacancies. Please note that bursars cannot choose the school in which they would like to be placed.


Applications for the Funza Lushaka Bursary for 2016 will be accepted from October 1, 2015.

There are approximately 3 500 new bursaries available in 2016. New applicants are advised to also pursue other funding opportunities.

Closing Date: January 8, 2016 (New applications)

  1. The bursary is only awarded to South African citizens. The application will not be considered unless the applicant has a valid South African ID number.
  2. The bursary will only be awarded if two of the priority area subjects are included as a specialisation in the teaching qualification.
  3. Please note that you are responsible for paying your registration fee, awaiting the outcome of the bursary application. Paying for the registration fee does not mean you will receive the bursary.
  4. The Bursary Selection Committee meets and processes all bursary applications during February and March of the academic year.
  5. The Funza Lushaka Bursary Coordinator at the University will notify you, not later than April 30, as to whether you have been awarded the bursary or not.
  6. On qualifying, the bursar will be required to take up a provincial teaching position. The bursar will not be granted permission to defer this contractual obligation, for example, to continue with full-time Honours studies. Nor will the bursar be granted permission to take a “gap year”.
  7. The Department of Education will use email or SMS to communicate with bursars. Bursars will be expected to have an email address and if possible a cellphone contact for SMS purposes.
  8. One of the contractual obligations of this bursary is that the bursar is required to teach in a provincial teaching post. The bursar is free to choose the province in which he or she would prefer to teach. However, should the province of choice not be able to offer a post, the bursar will then be offered a post in any of the other provinces. To meet the contractual obligations the bursar will have to accept the offer.
  9. The bursary must be repaid if the recipient fails to qualify, fails to apply for a teaching post with a provincial education department at a public school, fails to take up a teaching post with a provincial education department at a public school, leaves a teaching post with a provincial education department before the end of the contracted service period, or otherwise fails to meet a requirement of the bursary agreement.
  10. The amount that is repayable is the full amount of the bursary received under the programme, less one year’s funding for every year spent teaching at a public school. Interest will be charged at the rate determined by the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) that administers financial aspects of the bursary on behalf of the Department of Education.
  11. The bursary is awarded for one academic year at a time. On proof of academic success, the bursary may be renewed each year until the recipient of the bursary has qualified as a teacher. The bursary holder will be required to re-apply by the end of October for the following year. Recipients of bursaries will be required to teach one year for every year for which they receive a bursary.
  12. Bursary applicants must already have been accepted into an approparite qualification at an accredited higher education institution. The applicant must also meet the national selection criteria for the Funza Lushaka Bursary.

Selection criteria include the following:

  • The applicant is not a dropout from any university, and has no criminal record;
  • Eligibility for an approved degree or Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in two of the priority areas;
  • Commitment to a teaching career, which includes: interest in working with young people; enthusiasm for a professional career in teaching; readiness to face and surmount difficult challenges; and personal integrity;

Commitment to teach in any school to which a student may be appointed by a PED;

Everything else being equal, selection should favour candidates from rural areas, candidates who wish to teach in rural areas and candidates whose financial position would otherwise exclude them from enrolment for a teaching qualification.

The priority areas are:

Foundation phase (i.e. Grades R-3): Foundation phase specialisation in an Indigenous African Language.

Intermediate and Senior Phase (i.e. Grades 4-9): A teaching major in two of the following: Mathematics; Natural Science; Technology.

FET phase (i.e. Grades 10-12): A teaching major in two of the following: Accounting; Agricultural Sciences; Agricultural Technology; Civil Technology; Computer Applications Technology; Economics; Electrical Technology; Engineering Graphics and Design; Geography; Information Technology; Life Sciences; Mathematics; Mechanical Technology; Physical Sciences.

Click the following link to proceed with the application process.

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