Higher Education Policy reviewed
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Stakeholders drawn from the Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology, as well as other actors Wednesday converged on the Gambia Senior Secondary School’s Assembly Hall in Banjul to review the country’s higher education document.
The review exercise attracted participants from public institutions such as the University ofThe Gambia (UTG), The Gambia College, Management Development Institution(MDI), and the National Agriculture Research Institute (NARI), as well as educational cluster monitors.
Speaking at the meeting, an official of the Higher Education Ministry, Edrissa Colley, highlighted the policy statements, which according to him stressed that the Ministry shall strengthen the quality and provide higher and tertiary education and training, amongst others.
He explained that higher and tertiary education will cover Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), professional education, university education, as well as research education in The Gambia. He explained that TVET is a unique system that caters for the training in technical, vocational knowledge and skillsfrom apprenticeship to managing levels as enshrined in the Gambia Skills Qualification Framework (GSQF).
Dilating on the policy objectives, Colley disclosed that they will establish a Higher Education Observatory (HEO) body together with the National Training Authority (NTA) in order to standardise, validate, and accredit higher education programmes. He also disclosed that the sector shall organise working sessions to review quarter reports of all the main tertiary institutions.
Colley also spoke about the Ministry’s commitment to set up a team that will be tasked with monitoring the integration, while indicating that it shall conduct regular monitoring to higher and tertiary education institutions to ensure their adherence to policies and procedure.
Also adding his voice, a lecturer at the Management Development Institute (MDI), Fadia Kinteh, said great gender disparity exists among men and women that enrolled in higher and tertiary education institutions. He also observed that a large number of higher and tertiary education institutions are concentrated around the urban areas (mainly Region One and Two) of the Gambia.
The registrar of the Gambia College, Baboucarr Jallow, said there is the need to strengthen and ensuring the viability of researching various components, adding that it is vital to build institutional and individual capacities in order to attain the critical mass of researchers in the country.
Author: Fatoumatta K. Saidykhan