The Government established Community Technical Colleges throughout the country. Plans were that each of the twenty- eight (28) districts will have a college. In addition to Community Technical Colleges, it was also planned that each Constituency would have a technical and vocational school, namely Community Skills Development Centre. These centres will serve learners from the constituency whilst Community Technical Colleges serve learners from the district.
Establishment of Community Skills Development Centres
All Community Skills Development Centres (CSDCs) were established with support from World Bank and European Union. Those supported by World Bank were being managed by TEVET Authority and started providing training two years ago. The Ministry is therefore, managing CSDCs for the first time. The Ministry will start providing training in Community Skills Development Centres in January, 2021. These centres are under the District Councils/Assemblies just like Community Technical Colleges.
All the Centres that were established with the support of World Bank were established on existing structures and therefore were rehabilitated to turn them to training institutions. The World Bank through the TEVET Improvement Plan (TIP) supported TEVET sector with the establishment of 12 CSDCs. One Centre has been upgraded to a Community Technical College. The Centre is Kasama Community Technical College found in Chitipa. The European Union through National Authorizing Office (NAO) (a Department in the Ministry of Finance) constructed and equipped 18 CSDCs. In total the country has 28 CSDCs.
The TIP aimed at increasing access to quality and market-relevant skills development to marginalised and poor populations groups in the rural areas, mainly by strengthening supply structures. There were considerable numbers of under-used rural infrastructures in some development centres across Malawi that were established to empower rural communities. These included MEDI-supported Business Development Centres, community centres built under the Malawi Social Action Fund, as well as smaller centers that had emerged in the context of Community Based Organisations (CBO) and faith-based development projects. Some of these centres had buildings that were equipped with facilities such as basic training equipment and were owned and run by community-based organisations or faith-based organisations. TEVET Authority took 12 of these centres and supported them with basic training equipment and seed capital to run training programs using master craftsperson as trainers.
List of Community Skills Development Centres
The Community Skills Development Centres that are available are as follows:
Table 3: List of Community Skills Development Centres
|NO.||NAME OF COLLEGE||DISTRICT||STATUS|
|12||Galamukani||Chikwawa||Not yet open|
|13||Chinyasa||Machinga||Not yet open|
|14||Mgayi||Lilongwe||Not yet open|
|15||Ntchisi||Ntchisi||Not yet open|
|16||Kasungu||Kasungu||Not yet open|
|17||Zolokere||Rumphi||Not yet open|
|18||Likoma||Likoma||Not yet open|
|19||Chitala||Salima||Not yet open|
|20||Mpemba||Blantyre||Not yet open|
|21||Nankhundwe||Mwanza||Not yet open|
|22||Ukalanga||Mangochi||Not yet open|
|23||Nyambi||Machinga||Not yet open|
|24||Nkhwazi||Mchinji||Not yet open|
|25||Kapote||Lilongwe||Not yet open|
|26||Tchesa||Dedza||Not yet open|
|27||Mpamba||Nkhatabay||Not yet open|
|28||Mkazimasika||Mzimba||Not yet open|
The Community Skills Development Centres that were established by the European Union are not yet opened due to several factors. Construction of ablution blocks have just been completed. The sites were built without ablution blocks, water and electricity. The project constructed workshops only and equipped them with state-of-art training equipment.
The government has not yet hired the support staff i.e., Messengers, Security Guards, Ground staff workers.
All the teaching staff and copy typists in these centres were hired on Non-Established (NE) meaning, they are not on permanent employment.
The centres have not yet started receiving ORT to pay for utilities despite submitting budget to Treasury.
Low involvement of District and Local management structures.
There is a need to conduct a functional review which will create positions in colleges to address shortage of instructors due to introduction of new trades. The Review will also address the leadership challenge existing in Community Technical Colleges. The Ministry already sought guidance from Department of Human Resources Development and Management. An approval was given and what is required for the Ministry is to allocate resources to this activity.
There is a need to hold orientation meetings with District Commissioners and some key staff in Districts. The purpose is to enable districts appreciate their roles in management of both Community Technical Colleges and Community Skills Development Centres.
The Ministry needs to continuously engage Ministry of Finance and DHRMD to sensitize them of TEVET issues to enable them perform their duties as expected.
The Ministry and TEVET Authority need to frequently conduct career guidance and counselling sessions to address the challenge of low enrolments in TEVET sector. Many people take TEVET as a last resort. Female enrolment is always below, as low as 35% of the total enrolment at all level of TEVET institution.
Government should construct a Technical Teacher Training College to address the issue of having non-qualified teachers in the TEVET institutions.