Let’s recruit industry players to teach TVET — Dr Afeti
A Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) expert and consultant, Dr George Afeti, has said for effective teaching of TVET, there is a need to bring in instructors who possess relevant professional and workplace experience.
That, he said, was because as a skill-based form of education, teachers needed to be industry practitioners who could bring their skills to bear in a practical environment to give students a sense of field knowledge.
“In TVET education, it is not enough for teachers to possess only technical qualifications and pedagogical skills.
There is the need for an adequate number of TVET instructors who are both teachers and practitioners,” he stressed.
Dr Afeti, who is a former principal of the then Ho Polytechnic (now Ho Technical University), said that while delivering a lecture on the theme: “TVET; challenges and opportunities”.
It was jointly organised by the Electrical/Electronic /Technical Division and the Mech/Agric/Marine Technical Division of the Ghana Institution of Engineering (GhIE).
Dr Afeti, who is a former Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Association of Technical Universities and Polytechnics in Africa (CAPA), advised the government and all relevant authorities to incentivise the tutoring of TVET to attract such professionals as a way to address the low teacher quality in the sector.
He mentioned that other factors, including low industry investment and involvement, outdated curricula, obsolete training and academic facilities, low STEM education at the basic education level, weak assessment of skills and poor information and statistics on the TVET system were adversely affecting the sector.
To mitigate those challenges, he said that the revitalisation of TVET should mean more than an expansion of physical infrastructure because the fourth industrial revolution and beyond would require investment in digital infrastructure and affordable internet in TVET schools, quality assurance, teacher capacity building and readiness for the new paradigm and strong industry engagement.
Dr Afeti also urged the government to create a conducive policy and fiscal environment which encouraged the establishment, growth and expansion of especially local industries and manufacturing firms.
“For it is when enterprises grow and expand that opportunities for demand-driven skills training at all levels increase, the employment prospects for TVET graduates increase, and the social demand for TVET improves,” the practising mechanical engineer with over 30 years of experience explained.
The Chair of the Electrical/Electronic Technical Division of the GhIE, Ato Roberts, said the GhIE was an entity that encompassed artisans, technicians, technologists and engineers and as such, the lecture was needed to share ideas on how to solidify TVET as a practice.
“We believe that when it is grounded, as engineers, there would be a lot of opportunities for us to pick up good skills that would enhance our practice,” he added.