TEVETA Launches Strategic Plan for 2014 – 2016 as Education Minister Lays Foundation for TEVET Examinations Building
November 9, 2017
Creation of employment for the Zambian people has been the core objective for the Zambian Government today. Despite recording reasonable economic growth yearly, the country is still struggling to reduce poverty levels which keep rising due to lack of employment and a high cost of living. The failure of the country’s economic growth to translate into poverty reduction and job creation has become a major concern which requires immediate intervention by both Government and other stakeholders.
One of the measures that government has taken to create employment is to come up with the Industrialisation and Job Creation Strategy aimed at creating employment for people in line with the revised Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP) whose policy priorities are: inclusive growth, job creation and rural development, underpinned by significant capital project in Agriculture, accelerated infrastructure development, energy, health, education, skills development, water and sanitation.
The Technical Education, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Training Authority (TEVETA) being the pioneer of skills development that drives national development; was mandated by government to ensure that the strategy was successfully implemented by development relevant skills towards that attainment of objectives envisaged in the Industrialisation and Job Creation Strategy and the SNDP.
It against this background that TEVETA launched its strategic plan for 2014 to 2016, themed ‘Skills for Youth Empowerment’ with an objective of promoting access to TEVET and facilitating significant growth in annual enrollments and graduation rates by December 2016, while ensuring World class quality and system efficiency and effectiveness.
Speaking during the launch, Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education (MESVTEE), Dr. John Phiri said TEVETA’s strategic plan gave Zambia a unique opportunity for development and implementation of human development policies and strategies which were underpinned by a common approach, characterised by effective synergies across the entire spectrum of education and skills training.
He highlighted the publication by government of the Industrialisation and Job Creation Strategy, the establishment of the Zambia Qualifications Authority, under Zambia Qualifications Authority Act No. 13 of 2013 and nine other outcomes as having been achieved by Government since the launch of the New Curriculum Frame work for Education and training in January 2014. Dr. Phiri however bemoaned the low enrollment levels in Trades Training Institutions, especially those in rural areas.
“TEVETA’s Strategic Plan will play a significant role in development of skills in Zambia which desperately needs to be addressed in order to find ways of creating employment among the youth. However, the Ministry has noticed that enrollment at many of our Trades Training Institutions, particularly those in rural areas is very low. It is therefore, a paradox that we have severe space constraints at Upper Secondary Education and low enrollment in Trades Training Institutions. Despite these low enrollments, government is devising strategies to deal with this matter through (among others), the implementation of the two- tier Education and Training System beginning with Grade 9 School-leavers who have not been able to access space at Grade 10 in Upper Secondary Education,” said Dr. Phiri.
Dr. Phiri also stated that the introduction of the Zambia Qualifications Framework and the Zambia Qualifications Authority would enhance the quality of education and training as well as assuring confidence in professionals educated and trained in the country. He warned that all colleges that were operating below the required education standards of the country would be shut down in order to bring sanity in the Higher Education Sector.
Dr. Phiri commended the mining industry for taking important steps towards defining their role in skills development by establishing the Zambia Mining Skills Education Trust (ZAMSET) under the Chamber of Mines of Zambia. He further called on companies in other sectors to follow the example shown by the mining industry by establishing voluntary mechanisms and structures to support the development of necessary skills for their respective sectors.
And TEVETA Board Chairperson, Dr. Francis Ndilila explained that TEVETA and its Board settled for the theme ‘Skills for Youth Empowerment’ because the youth (the age group between 15 and 35 years) account for 85% of Zambia’s labour force population and if empowered with technical and entrepreneurship competences would achieve a complete makeover of the country’s social-economic landscape.
Dr. Ndilila added that it was delighting that Zambia was admitted to the World Skills International, an achievement which was attained through concerted efforts by TEVETA’s partnership with MESVTEE, Engineering Institution of Zambia (EIZ), National Council for Construction (NCC), Ministry of Transport, Works and Supply and many other stakeholders that promoted skills development in Zambia.
He revealed that one of the expected key outputs of TEVETA’s Strategic Plan was to promote as many learning pathways as possible in order to grow the average annual enrollment of the TEVET System from 32,000 to at least 154,000 by December 2016. “I call on government through the MESVTEE to help TEVETA in implementing the plan by providing adequate financial resources by way of targeted capital project grant starting next year.
Meanwhile, TEVETA Director General, David Chakonta said one of the priority outputs expected from the Authority’s plan was to increase annual enrollments for the TEVET sector from an average of 32,000 learners to at least 154,000 learners, with the majority being youths through promotion and development of increased variety of learning/training pathways which also include Secondary School Vocational Training.
Mr. Chakonta stated that the second expected output was a strengthened and expanded capacity of TEVET Examinations, and Skills Assessment and Certification System, which included construction and equipping of the new Examinations building.
He explained that these and some other expected priority outputs would ensure that TEVET graduates from both short and long duration programs contribute to at least 200,000 of the new jobs expected to be created by December 2014.
After the launch of the Strategic Plan, Dr. Phiri laid a foundation stone at the construction site for the new TEVET Examinations building which will house the Zambia Qualifications Authority (ZQA), Teaching Council of Zambia (TCZ), the Higher Education Authority (HEA) and some of the divisions under TEVETA.
© TEVETA Zambia 2018