Short Courses as Pathways to Enhancing Diversity, Inclusion and Equity in Training and Education: A Case Study of Thika Technical Training Institute
AbstractThe study set out to assess the impact of new flexible short courses introduced in Thika Technical Training Institute by the Flexible Skills Development (FSD) which are tailored to meet the needs of the local labour market. The guiding philosophy responds to the reality of an ever expanding informal sector and shrinking wage employment opportunities, large numbers of youth who are locked out of the formal skills training system and the limited as well as expensive training opportunities. This demonstrates the need for a system that establishes inclusion of those traditionally locked out of the system, equity through a diversity of courses and a flexible approach. In this regard, therefore, the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) FSD is designed to strengthen capacity in technical and vocational training institutions to adopt flexible delivery approaches and reach more learners. This is in line with the third goal of UNESCO Education For All (EFA) enunciated as; Ensuring that the learning needs of all young people and adults are met through objectives, equitable access to appropriate learning and life skills programs. The study utilized exploratory studies using both qualitative and quantitative methods. Data collection instruments entailed questionnaires, interview schedule, observation schedule and content analysis. The study found out that short courses have among others lead to attitudinal change, boosted the self-confidence of target group, inculcated basic skills and competences, created employment opportunities and boosted earnings.
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