The qualifications for students joining teacher training colleges have been lowered, amid a decline in the number of students choosing the profession in the last two years.
The Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA) said the entry requirements for diploma and certificate (P1) courses have been lowered.
Certificate courses will be phased out next year, leaving only diploma programmes for primary school trainee teachers.
“This is in line with the Kenya National Qualifications Framework, which has been widely discussed and adopted by stakeholders,” the authority’s director-general, Dr Juma Mukhwana, said in a statement.
According to the new rules, students seeking to study for diploma in education will need a C plain or C- in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE), down from the previous C+. Meanwhile, those seeking a certificate in education (popularly known as P1), will need a D+, down from a C plain.
“These changes will ensure the sustainability of teacher training in the country, which is under threat from reforms being undertaken in the technical vocational education training (TVET) sector,” Dr Mukhwana said.
He noted that students seeking direct entry to universities will still be required to have attained a mean grade of C+ in KCSE.
Last month, Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed raised concern over the low number of students applying to join teacher training colleges.
LACK OF INTEREST
“We have to address this issue, or else we will not get secondary and primary school teachers in future,” she said
Ms Mohamed regretted students’ lack of interest in the profession, yet the government was investing a lot of resources in the sector.
Ms Mohamed announced that students joining teacher training colleges this year to train as P1 teachers will be the last batch.
“We are phasing out P1 teachers. Those joining next year will not study for a certificate, but a diploma,” said the Cabinet Secretary.
Statistics from the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) indicate that there are 295,000 trained teachers who are yet to be absorbed by the government and private sector.