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Why All Universities in Kenya Are Phasing Out PT Lecturers

By Ouma Wanzala

The Kenyan Commission for University Education has announced that part-time lecturers will be phased out. The commission is determined to phase out part-time lecturers, saying most of them are giving substandard services to students.

Part-time lecturers will soon be locked out of universities as the higher education regulator moves in to ensure that those teaching in the institutions meet minimum requirements.

Anne Nangulu, the Commission for University Education (CUE) deputy CEO in charge of quality, audit and standards, said instead universities will be required to share available lecturers.

“We are encouraging intra-mobility of lecturers, which means that universities can share available lecturers,” said Prof. Nangulu.

She said the commission is determined to phase out part-time lecturers, saying most of them are giving substandard services to students.

“Most of these part-time lecturers cannot recommend students since most of them do not know the students as they spent less time with them,” she said during the just concluded conference on university education.

Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matian'gi delivers his speech during the biennial conference on the state of higher education in Kenya, at Kenyatta University on August 22, 2016. The Commission for University Education has announced that part-time lecturers will be phased out. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matian’gi delivers his speech during the biennial conference on the state of higher education in Kenya, at Kenyatta University on August 22, 2016. The Commission for University Education has announced that part-time lecturers will be phased out. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

CUE has directed that by 2018 all university lecturers must be holders of doctoral degrees.

Statistics indicate that there are 23 accredited public universities, 12 public university constituent colleges, 17 chartered private universities, five private university constituent colleges and 14 private universities with Letters of Interim Authority.

The body’s report indicates that for the past one year, close to 6,000 students enrolled for Ph.D.s, but only 369 graduated, which translates to 6.2 per cent.

It also indicates that the country has less than 10,000 Ph.D. holders, and requires 1,000 Ph.D.s per year in order to narrow the student-to-lecturer ratio.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

At the same time, seven university colleges and a private college are set to become fully fledged universities.

The certification will be presided over by President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House before the end of the year.

They include Kirinyaga, Rongo, Cooperative, Taita Taveta, Murang’a, Embu, Machakos, and Kenya Assemblies of God (KAG) East Africa School of Theology.

Meanwhile CUE Chief Executive Officer David Some has disclosed that the National Open University will be launched in December and will have all programs.

The Cabinet recently approved the Bill that allows the setting up of the open university.

Prof. Some added that the Kenya Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, which will offer only post-graduate programs, is being set up at Konza City.

“We are also setting up [a] university of applied science in the country with the support of the Germany government,” said Prof. Some.

He disclosed that a chancellors conference will be held in the first week of December that will also be attended by council chairmen and vice-chancellors.

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1 Comment for “Why All Universities in Kenya Are Phasing Out PT Lecturers”

  1. Dr. Njenga Solomon

    My heart shudders when higher education regulatory body – Commission for University Education (CUE) announces their bid to lock out all part-time lecturers from teaching by 2018! Their demand is not only reckless and wandering but also political in nature! As a matter of fact, CUE lacks moral authority to implement such a reckless and irresponsible demand – locking part-time lecturers from teaching in our Universities by 2018 is ridiculous. To begin with, CUE as a regulatory body is currently operating with over 60% of its staffs on part-time basis (referred to as consultants). Worst still, with the introduction of parallel degree programs in our public varsities, over 70% of lecturers are also on part-time basis and that’s why am saying, CUE’s demand is laughable! If CUE and public varsities cannot lead by examples on the matter at hand, then the government lacks moral authority to implement CUE’s demand.

    To make the matter worse, CUE’S proposal to encourage intra-mobility of lecturers from one University is not only vague but also impractical. How can universities share full-time lecturers in the wake of such an acute shortage of doctorate holders in Kenya? While it’s true that many part-timers are giving substandard services to students, it is preposterous for CUE to begin a battle that defeats logic of their existence. Their capricious quick fix to matters quality education must come to an end! With over 68 Universities in Kenya and 3 million enrolled university students, the role played by part-time lecturers cannot be overemphasized. CUE should refrain from their unprofessional and journalist approach to quality education and instead, focus on policies formulating that will accommodate the looming shortage of lecturers in Kenya.

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