Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) has been regarded as an important enabler for socio-economic development, which has become a priority area under ASEAN as well as the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organisation Regional Centre for Vocational and Technical Education and Training (SEAMEO Voctech).
Universiti Teknologi Brunei (UTB) Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Industry and Services) Haji Ady Syarmin bin Haji Md Taib yesterday said this at the 31st SEAMEO Voctech Governing Board Meeting at the SEAMEO Voctech (SV) Regional Centre. Haji Ady Syarmin spoke as a representative of the Ministry of Education, Brunei.
Governing Board members and representatives from 11 SEAMEO member countries attended the online meeting.
Haji Ady Syarmin said TVET is a priority area in the education agenda up to 2035 and placed under Priority No 4, while under the ASEAN Work Plan on Education 2016-2020, TVET it is placed under Strategic Goal No 4.
“ASEAN recently developed a Roadmap of ASEAN Declaration on Human Resources Development for the Changing World of Work, where SEAMEO Voctech will play several roles,” he said, adding that these roles include the Key Result Area 1 on Cultivated Life-Long Learning Culture and Key Result Area 2 on Improved Inclusiveness of Education and Employment for All.
SEAMEO Voctech will collaborate closely with the recently established ASEAN TVET Council (ATC) to address current TVET issues in the region as the ATC is a regional, inter-sectoral TVET body tasked with the coordination, research and development, and monitoring of regional education programmes to support the advancement of TVET in the region.
“Collaborating with ATC will provide an opportunity for SEAMEO Voctech to collaborate with other ministries and TVET players in the region,” Haji Ady Syarmin said.
Considering that TVET has gained momentum at both the national and regional levels, Haji Ady Syarmin said the centre is presented with opportunities to play a more impactful role. He called for the centre to overcome any limitation innovatively.
“I foresee that working with regional and national partners will be key to the centre to meet the high expectations of the TVET community,” the assistant vice- chancellor said.
Meanwhile, SEAMEO Voctech Centre Director Alias bin Haji Abu Bakar said the last quarter of the fiscal year up to the present day, has been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
The pandemic has greatly impacted the conduct of training and research activities of SEAMEO Voctech. The situation has made the centre’s management re-focus its activities on local and regional clients to fulfil its mandate enhancing the TVET systems of SEAMEO-member countries through innovative capability building, research and development, and information services.
“The current situation has not dampened the spirit of the centre towards achieving its vision,” he added.
A number of working papers were prepared for the meeting, including – Follow-up actions and resolutions of the 30th SV-GBM; Annual Report and Financial Audit Report for Fiscal Year 2019-2020; Three Years Budget for Fiscal Years 2021-2022; Proposal for the Continuation/Implementation of Technical Skills Upgrading Training for TVET Teachers in SEA – a collaboration with Temasek Foundation and ITEES, Singapore; Update on the Regional Knowledge Platform: SEA-VET.NET – a collaboration with GIZ-RECOTVET; Update on the Development of Regional common Core Competencies for TVET Personnel – a collaboration with GIZ-RECOTVET; and the Proposal on the Conduct of In-Company Trainers and Assessors Certification Courses.
Meanwhile, Director of SEAMEO Secretariat Dr Ethel Agnes P Valenzuela said the governing board meetings are important milestones of all SEAMEO centres as they update the ministries on the accomplishments and proposals, allow all Ministries of Education to give their input and more importantly, advise on SEAMEO Centres in ensuring the relevance and responsiveness of the centre programmes and projects.
“It also allows SEAMEO Centres to interface with the direct beneficiaries and co-implementers of education programmes,” said Dr Ethel.
“We at SEAMEO Secretariat believe that together, we can achieve our vision of enhancing regional understanding and cooperation in education, science and culture for a better quality of life in Southeast Asia.”