ONGWEDIVA, Aug. 23 – Learners from Tsumeb Otjikoto Senior Secondary School, Etosha SSS, Tsumeb SSS and Tsumeb Gimnasium Private School are undergoing vocational training at the Namibia Institute of Mining and Technology after their normal school routine.
From Monday to Thursday, learners are in enrolled in the trades of diesel mechanics, fitting and turning and electrical engineering. The programme is initiated by Dundee Precious Metals together with NIMT Tsumeb and it was launched last week Friday.
Vocational training is said to have started already on the 03 April 2017. The Deputy Minister of Education, Arts and Culture, Anna Nghipondoka said that the new curriculum reform allows for vocational and technical subjects to be taught to learners from as early as grade 8.
She said that the main objective of the programme is to prepare and train young Namibians to become job creators upon completion of school for Namibia to achieve Vision 2030.
Of the Tsumeb learners, 12 are in diesel mechanics, nine in electrical and nine in fitting and turning, and they will sit for examinations at NIMT in order to receive an N1 certificate after completion of eight practical subjects in their respective trades.
Nghipondoka noted that the Fifth National Development Plan (NDP5) has put a premium on the reform of technical and vocational training at school levels, with a plan to attract more learners to vocational training.
“This is one of the reasons why the Ministry has gone further to identify one senior secondary school in each region that will offer vocational subjects,” Nghipondoka said.
This programme allows students to take up four vocational subjects in Grade 11 followed by the last four in Grade 12.
The Vice President and Managing Director of Dundee Precious Metals Tsumeb, Zebra Kasete cautioned against the pitfalls of not investing in the nation’s youth.
“A nation that does not take care of its youth has no future,” he said.
Kasete regarded the 30 learners as privileged to be on the programme and urged them to grab the opportunity with both hands. He also encouraged the nation to accept the digital industrial revolution and urged that the youth be prepared to operate in that space. – Maria Abraham