Monash South Africa students petition against sale to ADvTech: Here’s why?

13 Sep 2018

PBM

The Student Representative Council (SRC) of Monash South Africa have launched an online petition that protest against the sale of the private university to a JSE listed private education group ADvTECH. They are concerned that the perceived value of their qualifications will be weakened by the sale and the attendant change of the institution’s name.

Launched on Wednesday the petition had gathered more than 2500 on Thursday afternoon. It carries a number of demands including that Monash South Africa should retain its name in order to maintain the perceived value and standard of its qualifications and its graduates.

The sale means that Monash South Africa is separating from its mother bodies. The institution has been operated as a joint venture between Australia’s Monash University and Laureate Education, the American originated and world’s largest private higher education network. Monash is ranked amongst the top universities in the world.

ADvTech announced the purchase of Monash South Africa early this week. This will see Monash South Africa join a list of other higher education institutions within the R4 billion private education business. Other brands in the business include: Vega, Varsity College, Rosebank College, The Private Hotel School, Capsicum Culinary Studio, Oxbridge Academy and ​The University of Africa.

ADvTECH has grown on the back of growing demand for private education in South Africa alongside names like Curro. It also houses a growing portfolio of private primary and secondary schools like ​Crawford Schools, Trinityhouse, Trinityhouse, Glenwood House’s, Greenwood Bay College, ​Centurus Colleges, Maragon Schools, ​Charterhouse, Pinnacle College Founders Hill, Pinnacle College Copperleaf, Pinnacle College Kyalami, ​Pinnacle College Rynfield, ​The Bridge Assisted Learning School and Gaborone International School.

Here follows the full extract of the petition’s text:

1)      Naming rights

We the students, in our capacity as major stakeholders in the business, reject the sale of the institution without naming rights. As students, any such stakeholder willing to acquire a controlling stake in our campus should retain the naming rights of the institution, as such, remain affiliated Monash University as a going concern. The changing of the name of the institution will affect adversely the employability and perception with which the alumni are viewed in the job market. We refuse to be alumni of a non-existent entity.

2)      World Class service

2.1  The investment of students both current and former will not be tampered with! The invaluable good faith, commitment, sacrifice and investment made into this school by both current and former students since its inception has been reduced to measly disposable transaction. The school did not have the courtesy to inform or consult with the Student Representative or Students themselves body of the process of the sale of the business. The students have, by choosing this institution over others, contributed not just monetary value but rather a lifelong investment. We have, as stakeholders, patronized the school in the good faith that the institution will strive to improve the quality of our education. The school has failed us again in this regard by failing to maintain the relationship to Monash University Australia. That we will not stand for!

2.2  In line with the value proposition of the campus, the students demand that Monash University Australia retains control of and oversight all academic material and qualifications currently accredited by Monash University that are currently being offered to students. The “World Class” quality qualification that was advertised and promised to the student’s rests solely on the control by (MU) of academic activity on campus.

2.3  Formal, written, legally binding communication by Monash University that the sale of the institution will not affect the academic integrity, quality and accreditation of all current Monash Students.

2.4  Assurance all staff currently employed by MSA will retain employment so as to not jeopardize the standard of service currently being delivered.

To support these demands please sign a digital copy here or a physical copy by the SRC office.

info@probonomatters.co.za

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