100 Teachers Trained for Vocational Program

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Authorities at the Ministry of Youth and Sports, have begun training the training of at least 100 teachers in for its vocational and technical programs in Monrovia. The 10-day training, with support from the United Nations Education and Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) through the ministry, began on Monday and is excepted to end early next week.

Over the years one of the biggest problems the country has been facing is the lack of trained teachers in the vocational and technical areas. The training is the first of its kind that will lay the basis for much stronger involvement in the Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET) sector.  There has been no training center with the exception of the Kakata Rural Teachers Training Institute KRTTI, for the regular teachers.

In a telephone interview last Monday in Monrovia, the Minister of Youth and Sports Saah Charles N’Tow disclosed that the training will basically focus on curriculum development; according to him the Ministry is also looking at developing a network of TVET teachers which will lead hopefully to a much stronger sector. The training brought together teachers from the fifteen counties, the ten day event  has targeted specific teachers who over the years demonstrated good performance records in terms of their commitment to their institutions.

He stated that the first thing the Ministry is going to do is to make sure that those who  reach the final level after the training will also be recommended for pay.

‘‘Our expectation at the end of the entire training is to see teachers get much better understanding and more commitment with a high quality teaching level,’’ something which he said if done, the Ministry will be able to support that in its national budget and most of the young people who are in other institutions both private and public sectors will also get the same quality of teaching as well.

Minister N’Tow further explained that following the conclusion of the training curriculum it will be more responsible to the current emerging labor market demands.  The youth and sports Minister also encouraged those teachers who are part of the training to have passion and be committed to the job which will be in the interest of young people that are willing to be a part of the TVET sector.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. 100 TVET teachers’ training on curriculum development? Wouldn’t it better if these teachers are trained on technical content of their areas of specialization, especially with respect to the their capacity gaps? All teachers do not need curriculum development skills but rather training on how to interpret and implement curriculum.

    One of the biggest problems in the TVET sector in Liberia is’under-qualification’ of both trainers and trainees. Trainers have limited and obsolete knowledge and skills, and they train students to be the same as they are. Therefore, MYS should be trying to address this gap, and do curriculum training only for limited number of specialists.

    Thanks.

  2. It is difficult if not impossible to disassociate myself from AFG’s stated position.
    Teachers who teach must be properly trained in the area of education. If a teacher is not properly trained to teach, a case of a “blind man leads the blind” will occur. Sadly, it happens in Liberia. But let me make myself explicit……… There are teachers In Liberia who are phenomenal! In fact, I think it’s fair to say that there are more qualified teachers in Liberia than non-qualified teachers.

    A while back in Liberia, I visited a guy who was a teacher in Monrovia, the nation’s capitol, not in the boondock or the countryside. In all sincerity, this guy (name withheld for security reasons) did exactly what I’ve described above. He was a blind man who mislead a group of blind men and women. Every sentence he wrote on the chalkboard was grammatically incorrect. The issue of “subject-verb” agreement was a no, no. I mean it!

    Who’s to be blamed for such a travesty?
    Some will point fingers at the Ministry of
    Education for hiring an unqualified gentleman to teach. Some may say that the gentleman shouldn’t have been misleading a bunch of people who wanted to learn. Well, where can we go from here? Blame the Ministry of Education or an unqualified man who wants to feed his family? The splitting of a hair is unlikely in this scenario. An argument can be made on both sides, but, I feel obligated to cut straight to the chase.

    (1) The Ministry of Education as well as all public schools need to be restructured. Furthermore, teachers and all school personnel need to be constantly trained and re-trained, possibly every year.

    (2) College graduates who are hired to teach, may teach from K-12 in their fields of specialization. All High School graduates may teach from K-6 or 7. And finally, all teachers who are non-High School graduates, may teach from K-to grade 1 or such teachers could be used as “Aids”. Classroom aids are charged with the responsibility of grading papers, running errands or could be used to help students who are slower than their counterparts.

    (3). All teachers must write a one-week lesson plan. All teachers must have a “Teacher Edition Textbook”, a grade book to record grades, an attendance book and a red ink pen to grade with.

    (4). All students (whether the schools are located in the boondocks of Liberia) must be given a full set of textbooks. Example, if the curriculum prescribes 6 courses for a pupil in grade 5, the pupil must be given his or full set of textbooks!

    (5). All schools (again, I don’t give a hoot as to where the school building is located in Liberia) must be fenced in, equipped with toilets for staff, boys and girls.

    (6). All public schools must be supplied with a Copier, a set of “desktop” computers and a generator if electricity is not available. It is easier to embezzle a laptop than a desktop that’s usually clamped on a table. It can be done.

    (7) Finally, in order for teachers to teach superbly, teachers must operate under a three-year contractual agreement. Example, after every three years, a few bulks should be added to teachers’ paychecks. (Members of the Liberian legislature get pay increases. Why not teachers? Are the legislators superior to the teachers who teach their kids, neices, or nephews? Lastly, teachers must be paid on time. There should not be a one-week delay when the month ends. In other words, paychecks “must” go out immediately to teachers after the month ends. It is downright stupid, if not treacherous to wait a few days to a week in order for a teacher to be paid after she or he has worked 30 odd days. Sometimes it seems as if our government does things that are counterintuitive! A new team, meaning the Weah-Taylor team could turn things around. If it happens, it’ll be in the very best interest of our country.

    I know what I write and say. I worked for the Chicago Board of Education as well as Prince George’s county board of Education, in Maryland. And I was born in Maryland, Liberia.

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