Economy

Central placement agency takes over teacher college trainees

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Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • The Ministry of Education gave KUCCPS powers to admit the students through its centralised placement system in line with the change in minimum qualifications from Teacher Training Colleges (TTCs) from certificates to diplomas.
  • Admissions to TTCs are currently done manually with students applying for the slots at the counties after the Ministry of Education advertises the openings.

Students eyeing teaching courses will for the first time apply for placement in colleges through the Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) in June.

The Ministry of Education gave KUCCPS powers to admit the students through its centralised placement system in line with the change in minimum qualifications from Teacher Training Colleges (TTCs) from certificates to diplomas.

Admissions to TTCs are currently done manually with students applying for the slots at the counties after the Ministry of Education advertises the openings.

KUCCPS’s centralised system places students into courses whose minimum qualification is a diploma. Institutions covered by the State agency include universities, TVETS colleges and the secondary teacher training colleges of Kibabii, Kagumo and Lugari.

“Placement for all diploma students is a KUCCPS mandate and so the changes are in line with the upgrade of the minimum qualification grade from certificate to diploma,” Margaret Muandale, Director Teacher Education Ministry of Education said yesterday.

Kenya scrapped the P1 certificate course last year and introduced a Diploma in Primary Education for primary-level teachers and Early Childhood Development Teacher Education diploma programmes for Pre-primary 1 and Pre-primary 2 teachers.

The changes are in line with the introduction of the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC) as the State moves to ensure quality delivery of the new system.

The entry requirement for the Diploma of Primary Education and the ECDE programmes was upgraded to Grade C (plain) in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examination or its equivalent as certified by the Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec).

But scrapping of the certificate qualification from TTIs comes at a time the number of students in their first, second and third years of the diploma courses has been falling in the last five years.

Data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics shows that the number of students pursuing a diploma in teaching fell to 1,218 two years ago from 2,640 in 2016.

Enrollment through KUCCPS will also see the students enjoy Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) funding for their tuition and accommodation costs for the first time.

Students in the teaching institutions are the only ones in the higher education sector that do not enjoy State funding through HELB.

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