TVET has been talked to death. The determination of academics to square the circle seems almost unstoppable. TVET is aligned with academic education but it has quite a different series of objectives.
Building a TVET System on Careers
By continuing to use vocational as an identifier, the academic community guarantees that parents will reject what is basically career education.
If we throw out the terms TVET and VET and build a system on careers and not academic failure, we can make this system successful. And here are the tasks:
- Meet the needs of the economy for a continuing access to new workers who meet employers requirements for both technical and soft skills.
- Meet the needs of young people for preparation for decent employment that is built on career ladders not single entry level jobs.
- Meet the needs of those already in the workforce for continuous upgrading to support long term employability and the evolution of industry to match technological change.
- Meet the needs of the community for upgrading of the unemployed or new mature labour market entrants with accessible technical and employability skills matching the requirements of employers.
TVET System Requirements to Perform the Tasks
- Each system will find its own balance among these tasks depending on demographics, state of economic development and social expectations.
- These factors vary across each country. Thus the balance is locally defined and communities, employers and their institutions need to be consulted on the balance. As the balance will change over time, this consultation must be regular.
- Skills Standards must be set by those who employ TVET graduates. Academic interference simply reduces employability. Without strong links with employers at an institutional level, TVET will be much less effective.