Vocational schools invited to compete globally

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By Arthur Arnold Wadero

The government has asked trainers and student assessors at vocational institutions to focus more on producing qualified graduates eligible for employment in the international market.

The education ministry said Ugandan vocational studies graduates need to be highly competitive so that they can easily be absorbed into the labor market after graduation or during their training. The call was made yesterday in Kampala at the start of the two-week assessor training for the Uganda Business and Technical Examinations Board (Ubteb).

Mr. James Kakooza, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education, in a message read by the Commissioner for Teacher Education, Dr Jane Egau Okou, explained that Ugandan graduates of vocational studies often have to compete with their counterparts in countries neighbors such as Kenya for international jobs.

“We want to bring it to the international level. We want people to recognize that when you are educated in Uganda you are a real subject that the working world will want. Once people find out, we’ll cross, ”Dr Egau told Daily Monitor on the sidelines of the training.
She added: “In the commerce and tourism industry, for example, we know that people from Kenya are good because they have already built a brand. So we want to create a brand for people to say, ‘when you get a Ugandan welder, he is a great person and it will all come from the work of the assessors’. “

Dr Egau explained that the government aims to achieve this professionalism within five years.
The two-week training session aims, among other things, to anchor assessors on the changes brought about by the digital age and new technologies, to hone their interpretation skills and also to instill confidence in the pursuit of professional studies.

Ubteb Executive Secretary Onesmus Oyesigye said at least 700 assessors would be trained to help assess students spread across the country.

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“We managed to train 218 last year [in the second phase]. This time, we are training 175 participants. But this group is unique because we have those from training institutions and those from the world of work. So that if necessary, training is done on a tripartite basis, ”he told Daily Monitor.

These would come from vocational schools, industries where students do internships and also from the government under Ubteb.

“This is because our evaluation model is in three phases. One is continuous, the other summative and the other practical. A [assessment] takes place within the institution and the industry and the other is administered with these people that we train, ”Mr. Oyesigye said.

He added: “Sometimes you find people in the industry say that we don’t produce people with the right skills like they’re not part of the system, so we got them on board.”


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