The Centre for Education Development is carrying out the Partnership for vocational education and training project, supported by the ESF-funded Knowledge education development operational programme. The project started in January 2016 and will end in February 2019. Its aim is to adapt VET to the needs of the labour market. It involves representatives of employers, VET education staff and teachers, and other stakeholders.
The project is divided into three stages:
- developing a social partners forum;
- linking qualifications and occupations with the needs of the labour market;
- linking vocational education to the needs of the labour market.
The first stage was completed in February 2018. 25 sectoral groups composed of social partner representatives, recommended changes in the classification of vocational education occupations and VET core curricula. They modified 53 VET core curricula, developed two for new occupations, and five for auxiliary occupations specifically targeted to those with slight developmental disabilities. Career development paths and diploma supplements confirming the attainment of occupational qualifications were prepared for 55 occupations. A total of 787 employers were involved in this stage of the project.
The second stage started in November 2016 and will be completed in June 2018. It has several aims: modernise 75 vocational education core curricula; prepare diploma supplements and qualifications linked to the new curricula; offer professional development paths; and develop teaching guidelines and plans.
In the third stage of the project, the Ministry of National Education and the Centre for Education Development, in cooperation with the Educational Research Institute and the Central Examination Board, organised 12 two-day sectoral seminars in several major cities. The seminars were attended by representatives of ministries responsible for the occupations of the sector discussed at each one, employers, and vocational school staff. They had the chance to provide their feedback on changes in vocational education planned by the education ministry. They also discussed the benefits and challenges in adapting VET better to the needs of the labour market.
The first day of the seminar was focused on how VET is currently preparing young people to enter the labour market. Participants tried to specify the actual number of occupations in each sector, the number of school programmes focused on each occupation, and the number of graduates. Discussions also covered the Integrated qualifications system introduced in Poland at the beginning of 2016 and the likelihood of including in it qualifications that are not part of the formal education system and are not statutorily regulated.
On the second day of the seminar, participants were divided into groups according to their specialisation. They discussed the challenges that both educators and employers are facing in linking VET with the labour market, providing the opportunity for both sides to present their practical realities and work on how best to tackle skills mismatch.
A summary report and recommendations on modernising core curricula were the outputs of each sectoral seminar.
Partnerstwo na rzecz kształcenia zawodowego [Partnership for vocational education and training]