What you need to know:
- Learning is founded on real-world skills and competency development as it avoids wastage in retraining on the part of the industry.
- Collaboration between industry and TVET institutions is crucial for the successful implementation of Competency-Based Education and Training (CBET) programs.
For any learner or student to progress in life, there is need for equity and it is for this reason that the government has embraced competency-based education.
The approach is to ensure equity for all students irrespective of their educational backgrounds and the approach greatly improves the chances that students will learn the most critically important knowledge, concepts, and skills they will need throughout their lives.
We are in a fast paced world; evolving careers and labour market needs require individuals who are adept at what they know and do and are agile.
Learning is founded on real-world skills and competency development (It is about what a trainee can do as opposed to what they recall) as it avoids wastage in retraining on the part of the industry.
Quality and relevance of education
Competency-based learning can help to eliminate persistent learning gaps, achievement gaps, and opportunity gaps.
As Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA), we have played a critical role in ensuring that CBET positively impacts on the quality and relevance of education and vocational training.
We have done this through active involvement of the industry in development and implementation of the industry. This is a requirement by KNQA for any qualification to be registered in the national qualifications database.
As an authority, we applaud the effort by the government to equip TVET institutions, equipping them with requisite infrastructure, skills anticipation, aligning curricula accordingly and flexibility, agility, innovativeness in the development and implementation of curricula; leading to quick placement and absorption of graduates in the labour market.
Dynamic and responsive approach
However, the implementation of CBET, has had its share of challenges. These include lack of awareness, fragmented implementation, lack of capacity by institutions, and lack of a structured way of incentivising the industry to participate in curriculum development.
Collaboration between industry and TVET institutions is crucial for the successful implementation of Competency-Based Education and Training (CBET) programs.
To ensure that learners benefit from a more dynamic and responsive approach to skills development, TVET institutions and industries can collaborate in several ways. One of the major steps is the shift of training philosophy from traditional content-based, time-bound approach to competency-based training (CBT).
Other effective steps that can be taken include inviting industry experts and employers to share their expectations with trainees and graduates, inviting successful TVET graduates to share with on-going students their own experiences, identify effective partnership models in the country and share what has worked, what hasn’t and what needs to be done.
Dr Kande is acting Director General of Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA). [email protected]