By Gilbert Kobi
Kisii Kenya 26th April 2021……………...The qualification of skilled workers is one of the key issues for the competitiveness of economies of most countries in the world. Speaking of economic transformation particularly in the global competition, to be able to achieve knowledge based economy each country requires to develop its knowledge based workers who are competent, adaptive, and innovative. Technical and vocational education and training (TVET) has proven to be essential in promoting economic growth and socio-economic development.
“There are several factors affecting the quality of vocational education, particularly in generating workers with qualified knowledge and skills, and reality shows that the quality of TVET teachers is the most salient factor among them. “Stated Mr Amos Andama Nyamoko CEC for Education, Labour and Manpower Development adding that TVET teachers and trainers have been long known as the backbone of countries economy development.
Without adequate numbers of professionally qualified teachers, TVET cannot offer the qualified skilled workers the notion Andama insists that the quality of TVET teacher education is crucial to determine the skills of future workers.
As the demand for qualified skilled workers increases rapidly, so does the demand for qualified per-service TVET teacher education, particularly in developing countries where governments strongly accommodate the rapid development of TVET schools both in terms of quality and quantity such as Kenya of recent.
According to the CEC in the county government of Kisii, the fact also increases the pressure, firstly, to TVET teacher training institutions to improve the quality of their pre-service TVET teachers, and secondly, continuing the training for teachers who already serve in the schools, so called in-service teachers training.
“Although the actual task of technical and vocational teaching has some important features that clearly differentiate it from teaching in other areas, the university tends to conduct the pre-service TVET teachers education or training with almost the same approach as for all areas of teacher preparation”, lamented Andama who said that preparing TVET teachers or instructors for TVET presents a complex set of problems that have been only partially solved, even in the most developed countries.
He further admits that one of the unique features in TVET education is that the knowledge and skills of TVET teachers or instructors can soon become outdated in a short period. This occurs as a result of rapid technological change.
He says that one of the important roots to accommodate this unique feature of TVET education in order to maintain a qualified teacher is to develop the learning culture for pre-service TVET teacher training.
In addition to the concerns of the TVET teacher quality improvement, Andama adds that currently there is a growing thought to introduce a research culture in TVET teacher education. The research conducted by the TVET teacher educators should be concentrated to build competencies in learning culture for teachers training and the competencies in developing the learning and teaching.
“I take this opportunity to thank all academicians who have seen it wise to raise up and join hands to save this generation from the past culture of if you have not qualified to university you are a nobody”, he concluded saying that there will be milestones being made to make Kisii and Nyamira counties great.