Govt applauds Aga Khan University on education

The Dean of the AKU-IED, Prof Jane Rarieya, and Minister of State for Higher Education John Chrysostom Muyingo, at the conference in Kampala on April 17, 2024.  Photo/Courtesy of Aga Khan

What you need to know:

  • Prof Rarieya said a positive difference and shift in mentality, agency and manner of operations is evident in teachers who are products of retooled tutors

The Minister of State for Higher Education, Dr John Chrysostom Muyingo, has applauded Agha Khan University for undertaking key and strategic investments in education.

Dr Muyingo was on April 17 speaking at a conference organised by the Aga Khan University’s Institute of Education Development. He said the education sector holds the key for growth and development of the country.

Educationists, teachers and policy makers from Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania have converged in Kampala to reflect, learn and deliberate on much needed improvement of teacher educators as an effort to cause a shift in the quality of education in the region.

The three-day Foundations for Learning (F4L) Conference is running under the theme, “Empowering educators: Building transformative and inclusive educational ecosystems in East Africa and beyond.”

Minister Muyingo welcomed the gathering as timely and acknowledged that the ongoing transformation of education worldwide faces challenges that require collaboration and innovation.

“Whatever we do depends on the quality of teachers. The quality of a teacher is determined by a teacher educator and this is why I want to thank the Aga Khan University for this very important conference. It is going to enable all the stakeholders to share good practices, experiences and best practices , and improve the quality of teacher education,” he said in his opening remarks yesterday.

He added: “I thank the Aga Khan University for heavy investment in education, in research, teacher education and the right skills. Our partnership with the Aga Khan University has always brought positive impact evident in the scholarship opportunities offered annually to Masters of Education students and the ongoing diploma in management programmes.”

Prof Jane Rarieya, the dean of  Institute for Educational Development, East Africa, on April 17 revealed that the institution has been retooling trainers across the three countries, with focus on the West Nile Sub-region in Uganda.

“This is the second of our conferences, the first was in Kenya and the third will be in Tanzania. We are working with teacher colleges to build the capacity of the tutors to develop first class teachers whom we are referring to as champion teachers who then can deliver teaching in a way that the countries envision,” she said.

Prof Rarieya said a positive difference and shift in mentality, agency and manner of operations is evident in teachers who are products of retooled tutors

“For many years, people were training teachers who are already in the field, but we are saying you have to start with the way a teacher is prepared,” she said

Dr Muyingo was optimistic that Uganda is ready to absorb all lessons, citing steps already taken, including the availability of a comprehensive National Teacher Policy

“Uganda is far ahead, we have a teacher policy which covers major aspects to professionalise the teaching profession,” he said

Some of the themes of discussion at the conference, include teacher professional development, innovative teaching, learning and assessment models and practices, integration of technology and digital literacies in Education, gender, diversity, and disability inclusion in education, managing educational policy and curriculum reforms, among others.

The Associate Vice Provost of Aga Khan University Uganda, Dr Joseph Mwizerwa, reiterated that the new university campus will be complete and opened early next year. 

This, he said, would enable the university to offer a wide range of programmes, including Journalism, Medicine, and Education, and bring quality education closer.

The university campus in Uganda currently offers only nursing and midwifery courses.