COL hosts Africa TVET Regulators Conference

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In partnership with the African Union Commission and its development partner, AUDA-NEPAD, the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) recently hosted the Africa TVET (technical and vocational education and training) regulators conference at the Kenya School of TVET in Nairobi under the theme ‘Strengthening Digital Transformation and Governance of TVET Systems in Africa.’

The objective of the conference was to take stock of the current state of TVET in Africa, review a strategy for blended TVET as part of the initiatives to implement the African Union’s Digital Education Strategy, advocate for the implementation of various approaches, models and tools in strengthening skills development systems in Africa, and to promote collaboration and partnerships among TVET regulatory bodies and develop a roadmap for harmonising TVET regulations, qualification standards and micro-credentials across the continent.

Heads of TVET regulatory bodies and commissions from across Africa, representatives from the International Labour Organisation, UNESCO and the German Development Cooperation, along with representatives from 15 African countries attended the conference from 30 November 30 to 1 December 2023

Ms Esther Mworia, Principal Secretary of Kenya’s State Department of Vocational and Technical Training, stated, “TVET education needs a paradigm shift to reduce high unemployment rates occasioned by lack of focus in skills development.”

Mr Nicholas Ouma, Senior Youth Adviser, African Union Commission, emphasised that a continental TVET digital transformation strategy is crucial. He added that such a strategy will position TVET for inclusive lifelong learning.

During the closing session, the Honourable Ezekiel Machogu, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Education, Kenya stated that helping solve Africa’s education challenges lies with TVET institutions. He urged collaboration between TVET regulators and TVET institutions to address “the significant gaps in education.”

Mr Robert Okinda, Adviser: Skills at COL, said that enhancing skills training is closely tied to the resilience of TVET systems. COL is actively assisting TVET ministries and regulators across Commonwealth countries to formulate policies, strategies, and standards for open and distance learning in TVET to promote more accessible, affordable and quality learning opportunities.

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