Outcry over deregistered social work program prompts ministry intervention 

Source: Outcry over deregistered social work program prompts ministry intervention – #Asakhe – CITE

Following an outcry from students, lecturers, and parents, the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education has urged the Council of Social Workers to reconsider its decision to deregister the social work curriculum offered by the Women’s University in Africa.

The Women’s University in Africa was removed from the list of validated training institutions by the Council of Social Workers, which also deregistered the university’s social work-study program.

This deregistration caused panic among former and current students as well as parents and guardians, who were left questioning the credibility of their qualifications, especially since many individuals are involved in care work overseas.

This prompted the intervention of the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, with Permanent Secretary Professor Fanuel Tagwira requesting the Registrar of the Council of Social Workers, Nesbert Tadzoka, to reconsider and recognize the Women’s University’s social work program.

“The ministry is of the view that the basis for the decision appears to associate the quality of the program with the examination venue,” said the permanent secretary in a letter dated June 24, 2024, which was also copied to Chief Director of Human Capital Planning and Skills Development, Prof. N. Takaidza, and Director of Higher Education Programmes, Dr. D. Murekachiro.

Prof. Tagwira said the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education is responsible for overseeing human capital development and the registration of professional bodies operating in the country. He added that it carries out this mandate through the Zimbabwe Council for Higher Education, which should accredit university programs.

“The Council of Social Workers’ decision to deregister the social work program is a matter of concern. The impact of this decision on the students, who are the cornerstone of the higher education sector, and its implications for parents, guardians, and lecturers are areas of significant unease for us,” said the permanent secretary.

In light of this, Prof. Tagwira requested the Council of Social Workers to review its decision to deregister the university’s social work program, as it could lead to negative implications for stakeholders.

“We respectfully urge your office to reconsider this decision, taking into account its potential adverse effects on the students, the academic staff, parents and guardians, and the broader education sector,” he said. “We trust that your consideration of this matter will be thoughtful and considerate of all stakeholders involved. A prompt resolution of this matter would be greatly appreciated.”

Earlier, the Women’s University had also released a public notice urging past, present, and prospective students to be assured that the institution is compliant with all requirements of the Council of Social Workers, the Zimbabwe Council for Higher Education, and all bodies that govern the teaching and learning of the different programs offered by the university.

“The Women’s University in Africa in 2024 ranks 6th out of over 18 universities in Zimbabwe according to Uniranks.com, and we continue to be focused on the provision of quality education. We take pride in the fact that our alumni, who are mostly social workers, are doing very well all over the world, and we assure our stakeholders of our utmost commitment to excellence,” said the university.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 0