Deputy Chief Education Officer, with responsibility for technical education, Patrick Chinedu Onwuzirike says that local industry stakeholders are now playing a key role in the formation of the syllabus for the local Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET) institutions
Onwuzirike in a recent interview told the Government Information Agency (GINA), that this input will boost the programme and update the curriculum to meet the current and future economic challenges that confront Guyana.
“Unlike before, when we just sit down as educators and write a curriculum, that is no longer the case, we invite the industry, for example, our automotive industry, we invite those industry we think or we know are operating or practicing in that industry, we called them, we say guys we want to develop a level one, a level two programme in this area and what do you think are the set skills that are need for somebody to operate say as an entry level technicians,” Onwuzirike explained.
Onwuzirike pointed out that the stakeholders are not only providing feedback on the curriculum but they are also part of the assessment arrangement.
“We call them external verifiers. They are going to an institution to verify what was done and they would determine whether what was done was rubbish and say, ‘look throw this away’ or say ‘we believe this child can perform at this level at this time and that this child should be given that certificate,” he explained.
In line with the move to have the industry inform the training programmes at the local TVET level, Onwuzirike explained that a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between Machinery Corporation of Guyana (Macorp) and the Linden Technical Institute (LTI), for the development of heavy duty training for mechanics and vehicle technicians, in accordance with the industry needs.
“They are not just giving us the finance or probably the tools, but they will be training our trainers as to what is expected,” Onwuzirike said. He explained that Macorp will be taking the LTI trainers to their factories, “to let them know how it is done, what is the latest technology.” The trainers will then go into LTI, and work with the students.
The Council of TVET and Ministry of Social Protection are working on a labour market information survey that will further lead to the development of more demand driven TVET programmes.