The entry grade for people wishing to join the teaching profession will be raised if proposals by the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development are adopted.
The institute (KICD), which is leading a curriculum review set to be rolled out in 2018, has proposed that the entry grade for early childhood development education teachers be C plain, up from D.
Those wishing to become primary school teachers should have a C+ instead of the current C, diploma teachers should have B-, up from C+, while those seeking degrees in education must have a B+ in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education examinations.
“At all levels, there should be practicum (teaching practice) at the end of the first year and second year supervised by lecturers and teachers and principals in schools,” says the report that is awaiting approval from education stakeholders.
KICD has also proposed an improvement in communication skills among teachers, noting that many cannot do so competently, contributing to poor performance by learners.
It also wants the inclusion of mentorship in teacher education as well as talent nurturing and resource utilisation courses.
Another proposal is the introduction of more continuous assessment tests, projects and practicals with formative exams at the end of term, like in universities.
The KICD report also emphasises that teacher education be reformed to create a conducive environment where learners can identify and nurture their talents through clubs, sport and other co-curricular activities.
It also proposes that learning resource centres in colleges should be modernised while teachers should be trained on effective use of IT and make it examinable.
The study underscored the need to set up material development departments in colleges to teach learners to develop their own resources and utilise existing ones.
“There is need for teacher education institutions to adjust their approach to match the current era and meet the learning processes of the current generation of children. This could be achieved by emphasising competence in the use of ICT,” says the report.
The report, dubbed “Needs Assessment Research for Curriculum Reform in Teacher Education in Kenya”, was compiled last month.
The study adopted a mixed approach involving the use of quantitative and qualitative surveys as research methods.
A total of 6,216 participants took part in the study out of an anticipated sample of 10,415 and a target population of 101,750. Of these, 6,020 participated in the quantitative phase while 196 were in the qualitative segment.
Participants included student teachers, teachers, lecturers, headteachers, principals and other education stakeholders from all over the country.