KNQA: Those Without Certificates Are More Qualified Than Those Who Have
The Kenya National Qualification Authority (KNQA) says that at least 80 per cent of Kenyans undertaking technical and vocational work in the country have no certification despite their significant contribution in driving the economy.
KNQA Director General Dr Juma Mukhwana said a huge number of the remaining 20 per cent with certification may not be able to undertake tasks taken by those without.
“The way our economy works almost 80 per cent of people doing Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) work have no certification. Of the remaining 20 percent who have the certificate, some of them are not able to do things that those without a certificate can do, infact those with certificates usually have to do internship under those without certificates to become competent,“ said Mukhwana during a stakeholders’ forum on Recognition for Prior Learning (RPL) recently.
Mukhwana, however, said that the national qualification framework, which sets standards for RPL, has harmonised and disentangled systems in such a way that it is possible to link skills obtained in the informal to those in the formal sector, something that has been lacking over the years.
Coordinated way For a person to be given a certificate, Mukhwana said they must exhibit certain competencies, adding that KNQA has set benchmarks for awarding certificates in a coordinated way. “The national qualification framework is an important tool for connecting all of us, this is what has connected the National Industrial Training Authority with TVET Curriculum Development and Assessment Certification Council, Kenya National Examination Council and universities and everyone has an equal footing. We have created a level playing field,” said Mukhwana.
KNQA has, however, raised concerns that there is still low awareness in the informal sector and inadequate human and institutional capacity.
Mukhwana said that RPL policy framework has also been developed to recognise the fact that people who work in the formal and informal sectors gain knowledge, skills, expertise and attributes through practice.
According to the policy, people can approach any accredited assessment centre in the country and apply for recognition of their skills.
In return, Mukhwana explains that regulatory bodies are expected to provide quality assurance and standards in line with the RPL policy.