The regulatory framework transition process on the right track
The local qualification regulatory body, Botswana Qualifications Authority (BQA)acting Chief Executive Officer Auma Jobe, says the transition process of monitoring, registration and regulation framework of qualifications by all Education and Training Providers (ETPS) including the Technical and Vocational Education Training ( TVET) providers is on the right track and is bearing positive outcomes due to the response from training providers.
Jobe was speaking at the BQA TVET Education Providers’ Consultative workshop organised to give an overview of how BQA and TVET education providers are forging close working relations. She said as with other education and training providers, TEVT is also under the mandate and scope of BQA monitoring and evaluation, hence the need to bring TVET on board. She said BQA will coordinate and develop a qualification framework and registration of programs or qualifications for the Technical and Vocational Education Training institutions by continually engaging them in order to understand the process of registration and submissions of qualifications for accreditation.
She emphasised that “the registration of qualifications is a new process under the transition that BQA undergoes and TVET sector is not left behind as it also forms the part of our regulatory and qualification mandate. We have developed a comprehensive framework for the first time as a country, and it encompasses general education and TVET inclusive and as country we need to applaud ourselves for such step on the right direction for our qualification framework”.
Jobe further said TVET should also develop qualifications and submit them to the authority to oversee and perform the accreditation process, adding that BQA is committed to continually engage TVET in issues pertaining to the interpretation of the qualification laws and the requirements of a fully assessed quality assured qualifications. “We want collaborate and reflect to see what is key and relevant for TVET education system and transit with all players in mind including the learners, and our efforts will together make the entire transition process a success” She noted.
The BQA acting CEO reiterated that they will train experts on the new regulation system aiming to at least train over 300 this year. She added that they will continue to source experts from each other’ system across SADC region emphasizing that when experts are trained under Botswana system it is a way that they are trained under any SADC system because they are aligned.
Moreover, BQA is still keen and committed to protect learners who are the priority of the regulatory body. This was revealed by the BQA Customer Service Manager Bakani Thote who indicated that the learners protection guidelines remains vital in any education providing system and therefore said BQA is committed to ensure that everything is centred around learners’ protection.“There is need for specific policy and requirement that speaks to learner protection and the legal foundations of the learner protection are contained within the BQA Act which establishes the mandate of the authority. Through Section 4 (2) of the Act, BQA is expected to design procedures and rules for the protection of enrolled learners guaranteeing completed accreditation and all ETPs should comply with and put arrangements for enrolled learners protection,” he said.
For her part Registration and Accreditation Manger Segomotso Chimbombi in TVET stressed the importance of clarity and accountability for monitoring and implementation citing that effective and well taken implementation can be beneficial and impact on many people ’lives including the business community in education sector. She also noted that that well stipulated criterion of Governance of ETPs is also essential otherwise it will compromise the quality of accredited programs, pointing further that governing body or structure in the institutions outlines the roles of board members or governor’s hence effective running and outcome of the TVET institution.
The workshop discussed and focused on issues such as the transition and the legislative framework of BQA and how it will be implemented across the TVET education system which pundits have in many instances cited as one of the crucial education sectors that can result highly effective graduates who can help diversify the economy and create jobs.