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The cost of equality: analyzing the unforeseen financial strains of fee-free higher education in South Africa

Source E-Journal of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (EHASS)
Authors S.J. YendeZ.M. Mthombeni
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
Print HSRC Library: shelf number 9814115
handle 20.500.11910/22721
In the past, many South African students found it difficult to pursue higher education due to the high expense of tuition, which also restricted their prospects for development on both a personal and professional level. Fee-free education has helped to level the playing field and provide equal access to education, regardless of an individual's financial background. Evidently, financially disadvantaged students now have better access to higher education, and this is attributed to fee-free education in South Africa. However, budgetary restrictions exist in South Africa, and the government's finances are put under strain by the country's policy of free public education for all pupils. The purpose of this article was to discuss unforeseen financial constraints in South African higher education due to fee-free education. In this article, a qualitative content analysis was employed which was grounded on analysing the existing scholarly literary writings. This paper established that enrolment rates in universities and colleges all around South Africa have increased significantly because of fee-free education. This research adds to the continuing discourse concerning the expenses tied to achieving equality and the unanticipated financial pressures stemming from tuition-free higher education in South Africa.