NEWSROOMDevelopment of Maldives National TVET Policy Framework

Developing a National TVET Policy Framework for the Maldives: A Comprehensive Five-Day Program

In a determined effort to strengthen technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in the Maldives, a comprehensive five-day in-country program was organized to develop a National TVET Policy Framework. This initiative supported by the MEERY project, is a collaboration between Maldives National Skills Development Authority (MNSDA) and Colombo Plan Staff College (CPSC). The program aims to address existing challenges, leverage international best practices, and lay a solid foundation for a robust TVET system in the Maldives. It brought together stakeholders, educators, and policymakers to collaboratively shape the future of TVET in the country.

The primary purpose of this event was to collaboratively develop a National TVET Policy Framework that addresses the unique needs and challenges of the Maldives. By engaging stakeholders and learning from international best practices, the program aimed to create a policy that is both effective and sustainable.

The MEERY project funded this workshop to invest in the future of Maldivian youth and the national workforce. By enhancing TVET, MEERY aims to equip individuals with the skills necessary for the modern job market, thereby improving employment opportunities and economic growth. This funding underscores the commitment to fostering a skilled and capable workforce through comprehensive policy development.

Day 1: Introduction and Identifying Challenges The program began with an introduction to TVET policy and its components within a global context. Participants gained insights into the essential elements of effective TVET policies worldwide, setting the stage for informed discussions. The primary focus of Day 1 was to engage participants in identifying and discussing the challenges faced by the current TVET system in the Maldives. Workshop 1 provided a platform for various groups to document their thoughts on policy objectives, issues, and challenges specific to the Maldivian context. This exercise was crucial in understanding the gaps and areas that need immediate attention.

Day 2: Learning from International Models Day 2 was dedicated to reviewing TVET policies from several countries, including Sri Lanka, Singapore, the Philippines, Pakistan, India, and Malaysia. These case studies provided valuable insights into different approaches and strategies that have been successful elsewhere. Following this review, a session was held on the formulation process of the Maldives TVET Policy Framework. Participants delved into the existing TVET strategic plans of the Maldives during Workshop 2, with the aim of structuring an effective and contextually relevant policy framework.

Day 3: Establishing Priority Pillars and Objectives The third day was pivotal in shaping the core elements of the TVET policy. Participants engaged in creating priority pillars, objectives, and guidelines during Workshop 3. Prior to this workshop, sessions focused on TVET reforms, qualification frameworks, monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, and capacity building for training educators and assessors. These discussions ensured that the policy framework would be comprehensive and cover all necessary aspects for a sustainable TVET system.

Day 4: Resource Identification and Strengthening Industry Partnerships On Day 4, the focus shifted to the practical aspects of implementing the TVET policy. Sessions included resource identification, understanding government obligations for ensuring policy validity and reliability, and strengthening the industry's role as a key partner in TVET. Legal and regulatory structures necessary for a strong TVET system were also discussed. Workshop 4 was dedicated to developing an action plan for the policy framework, outlining clear steps for implementation.

Day 5: Presenting the Draft Policy The final day began with group presentations of a draft TVET policy, synthesized from the workshops and discussions held throughout the program. These presentations allowed for feedback and refinement of the policy. The senior team then presented a consolidated version based on inputs from all groups, ensuring that the draft policy was well-rounded and comprehensive. Outcomes from the Workshop The workshop resulted in several key outcomes:

  1. Draft National TVET Policy Framework: A collaboratively developed draft policy that includes priority pillars, objectives, guidelines, and an action plan.
  2. Increased Stakeholder Engagement: Enhanced involvement of various stakeholders, including educators, industry partners, and policymakers, ensuring broad-based support for the TVET policy.
  3. Identification of Challenges and Solutions: A clear understanding of the current challenges in the Maldivian TVET system and potential solutions informed by international best practices.
  4. Capacity Building: Improved capacity of participants to develop, implement, and monitor effective TVET policies.
  5. Strategic Partnerships: Strengthened partnerships with industry and other key stakeholders, essential for the successful implementation of the TVET policy.

The program concluded with a sense of achievement and readiness to take the next steps towards implementing the new TVET policy framework, aiming to transform technical and vocational education in the Maldives for the better. A steering committee was selected to develop a final strategy, and more small group consultations will be conducted. After policy-level discussions and approval, the final implementation is planned to launch by the end of September.

Article by : Meery