Discretionary Grants: How to secure funding from SETA for training

Posted on: Oct 9, 2018, in Blog
SETA Funded Training


What are discretionary grants?

Discretionary grants are paid out at the discretion of SETA management for skills development projects linked to scarce and critical skills.

These discretionary grants are applicable when an employer addresses the sectors scarce and critical skills through the following PIVOTAL programmes (Professional, Vocational, Technical and Academic learning programmes) that result in occupational qualifications or part qualifications on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF). The bulk of discretionary funding is directed at the provision of PIVOTAL or learning programmes, which comprise the following: Learnerships, Work Integrated Learning, Internships, Bursaries and Skills programmes. These learning programs can be both for employed as well as unemployed people.

If the discretionary grant is based on the industry scarce and critical skills of that sector it is highly likely that the SETA will award funding for those specific learning programs.  It is the mandate of the SETA to close the scarce and critical skills gaps of each industry and this is why the Seta will award additional funds to close these skills gaps. The Skills Development Facilitator (SDF) should consult with the employer on the current scarce and critical skills identified by the SETA and see if those training needs are applicable to the company. Discretionary grants are aimed at encouraging companies to contribute towards skills development by giving people accredited training, full qualifications or workplace experience through internships and occupationally directed programs.

Who can apply for SETA Funding? 

Submitting a discretionary grant funding application through the SETA is not a process all companies pursue after submitting the Workplace Skills Plan (WSP), a lot of companies are content by just submitting the Workplace Skills Plan and receiving the mandatory 20% of the Skills Development Levi (SDL) contribution. However, companies that contribute towards the skills development levy should realise the value in submitting the discretionary grant applications through the allocated SETA and access additional funding. The discretionary grant application is key to unlocking the additional potential 49.50% of the skills development levy available to the employer.

Learnerships and SETA Funding

Learnerships for employed and unemployed people are a great way to increase your training spend as you can count the salary of the learner as a training expenditure in B-BBEE. Through the learnership process, the employer is able to increase the level of skills of his/her employees and reclaim the cost of the learnership fees from their SETA. The current tax incentives also make it attractive for companies to pursue the learnership programs and utilise that value of the tax deduction.

The ideal way in which a company could acquire its full training spend is through unlocking the discretionary grants and accessing funds to address their training needs. When companies cut cost and stop spending the training budget is normally the first thing that disappears, however, this does not have to be the case when the SDF unlocks the potential of the discretionary grant and access the funding that the company should be rightfully claiming.

Applications for Discretionary Grants must be made and approved before any training or other activity related to the skills development project can commence. Please contact the relevant SETA to find out if you qualify for funding.

The following SETA’s Discretionary Grants 2019/2020 Funding Window Is Now Open:

  1. The Transport Education and Training Authority (TETA)
  2. The Chemical Industries Education and Training Authority (CHIETA)

TETA Submission Deadline: 28 October 2018 at 16H00

CHIETA Submission Deadline: 17 October 2018

NOSA Logistics, a level 2 B-BBEE contributor can assist with the application and  implementation of the following learnerships and skills programmes:


Skills programmes:

  • Various professional driver skills
  • Warehousing

For more information on learnership implementation and how learnerships can benefit your organisation, kindly contact one of regional offices:

DBN: info@nosalogistics.co.za | +27 (31) 705 2215

JHB: infojhb@nosalogistics.co.za | +27 (11) 027 486 9001

CPT: infocpt@nosalogistics.co.za | +27 (21) 486 100

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