The government’s determination to make technical and vocational education a priority has received a major boost following the launch in Accra of the Ghana Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Service by the Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia.
This brings together all the technical and vocational programmes run by 19 different ministries under the ambit of the Ghana TVET Service, with the Director General of the Service reporting to the Minister and Ministry of Education, like her counterpart, Director General of the Ghana Education Service and other agencies under the ministry.
The operationalisation of the service is also to ensure the smooth take-off of the government’s flagship programme “Free TVET For All”, under which all the TVET institutions which are now captured under the Ghana TVET Service will be included in the next academic year’s (February 2022) Computerized School Selection and Placement System (CSSPS) for selection by the Junior High School graduates.
Performing the launch on Tuesday 14 December 2021 at the Accra Technical Training Centre (ATTC), Dr Bawumia recalled that before the Akufo-Addo government assumed office in 2017, many challenges including the poor perception of TVET, the multiplicity of standards, testing and certification systems, and an informal TVET system that had been neglected and detached from the formal sector affected the quality of TVET delivery in our institutions.
This made it difficult for the sector to become the key catalyst that could spur industrialization and decent job creation for the citizens of this country but Government, he assured, is tackling many of these issues.
“This government from 2017, as part of the President’s plan to transform the Technical and Vocational Education and Training in the country, has been streamlining the TVET Sector to ensure that the sector becomes a central force of our national development agenda.
“One of many such initiatives to ensure this, is the establishment of the Ghana TVET Service. In 2017, Government formed a 15-Member Technical Committee with Membership from various Ministries and Agencies to establish the Ghana TVET Service.
“After extensive work and national stakeholder engagement, the Committee presented a Draft Bill to Cabinet for approval in 2019. The draft was later sent to Parliament and assented to by the President of the Republic, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on 29th December 2020 as “Pre-Tertiary Act, 2020 (Act 1049)”.
The essence of Act 1049, Dr Bawumia explained, is to ensure that all TVET Providing Institutions under the 19 Ministries are realigned to the Ghana TVET Service. Hitherto, these TVET Institutions were under the umbrella bodies such as Ghana Education Service’s Technical and Vocational Education Division (GES-TVED); National Vocational Training Institute (NVTI); Opportunities Industrialisation Centre Ghana (OICG); Gender, Children and Social Protection; Ghana Regional Appropriate Technology Industrial Service (GRATIS); Community Development Vocational Institutes (CDVI); Youth Leadership and Skills Training Institutes (YLSTI), Social Welfare Training Institutes, Farm Institutes and Technology Solution Centres; and the Integrated Community Centres for Employable Skills (ICCES).
While improving the capacity of the country’s educational sector to create a more robust TVET Service, it is equally important to focus attention on the professional and capacity building of the facilitators and teachers who will train the young people in the various Technical and Vocational Training Institutes, Dr Bawumia noted.
“Thankfully, the Ministry of Education has made significant progress with teacher professionalism to conform with global education standards.
“I, therefore, urge parents of JHS graduates to counsel their wards to consider choosing TVET programmes since these programmes are designed to equip our SHS leavers with practical skills needed for the job market.
Addressing the fears of parents and guardians who may have been worried about a possible truncation of the educational path of children who take the TVET path, Vice President assured: “There is the opportunity for those who complete their TVET programmes to continue from the National Proficiency levels through Certificate levels to HND, B.TECH, M.TECH to the Doctor of Technology level with the National TVET Qualifications Framework (NTVETQF), which the Commission is implementing for TVET.”
The first Director General of the Ghana TVET Service, Mawusi N. Awity, pledged her outfit’s commitment to meeting the needs of the youth, saying “We will ensure the acquisition of skills by the youth and the elderly to enable them create jobs and help move our beloved Ghana forward.”