What you need to know:
- Harmonising standards of training will only be possible if the Ministry of Education is given expanded mandate in coordinating specialised training institutions.
- Of particular concern are technical and vocational education and training institutions.
As the government pursues reforms in the public sectors, one area that should be targeted is training arm.
The country has several specialised training institutions, which are managed by different sectors. But while sector-based training institutions can be domiciled in specific parent ministries, they should receive semester calendars from one ministry. The current management approach is breeding confusion and turf wars between institutions.
Harmonising standards of training will only be possible if the Ministry of Education is given expanded mandate in coordinating specialised training institutions. Yet the biggest challenge facing the tertiary institutions is poor quality of training.
Of particular concern are technical and vocational education and training (TVET) institutions.
These institutions were meant to be under one regulatory agency, the Technical and Vocational Education and Training Authority (TVETA), but the differentiated education architecture has presented a dilemma to the agency.
Most specialised institutions have complied with the competency-based requirements and can serve as centres of excellence. But in the current set-up, TVETA has no power or capacity to regulate the quality of training in the specialised institutions.
Parliament should amend the Education Act to give the ministry more powers to direct all education matters in the country. Any other docket whose mandate is outside training should concentrate on its core function. This will bring order in the training sub-sector.
This move is long overdue yet it would bring efficiency and proper coordination in the education system. As a matter of fact, post-secondary education must be run in a seamless manner.
Benard Amaya, Nairobi
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In, perhaps, one of the saddest days this year as far as education is concerned, Justice Weldon Korir recently dismissed a case in which a Mount Kenya University graduate had sued Kenya School of Law following its refusal to admit him to the Advocates Training Programme (ATP).
To the non-discerning eye, that is alright as the litigant didn’t score the ‘right’ grade in KCSE. But then, the government created a system that makes the Form Four examination the yardstick.
Failure to score the “university pass-mark” (read C+) will condemn one to a lowly life. One will never be appointed to some positions, admitted to certain courses or just be what they can be.
A simple two-hour test should not determine how brilliant or stupid a person is. But ut does! Hence, people will go to any length to get the ‘perfect’ grade.
Cornelius Oliko, Mombasa