Improving vocational education and training
Title: Promotion of vocational education and training in Namibia
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Co-funded by: European Union (EU)
Partner: Namibia Training Authority
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Higher Education, Training and Innovation (MHETI), Namibia Training Authority (NTA)
Overall term: 2018 to 2021
In Namibia unemployment or underemployment are widespread and the broad unemployment rate stands at 34 per cent and at 43.4 per cent for Namibians at the age from 15 to 34 years (Labour Force Survey 2016). Namibia is a middle-income country but is still characterised by high levels of income inequality. With a growing youth unemployment rate, the Namibian Government has recognised the need to develop strategies that cater towards this growth. Visible progress has been made in estab-lishing a modern Vocational Education and Training (VET) system over the past few years.
Despite making progress, Namibia’s VET system is still not adequately geared towards the needs of the labour market. The Namibian Government has highlighted the importance of VET to the country’s economic and social development in its development strategies. Both the Fifth National Development Plan (NDP 5) and the Namibian Government’s Harambee Prosperity Plan set clear priorities relating to the development of the VET system. In addition, the private sector is demanding skilled workers in the main sectors of the Namibian economy.
The Namibian VET system is increasingly geared towards the needs of the labour market.
The first field of activity aims to strengthen the capacities of selected public and private VET providers to offer new or reformed training courses. This activity field also supports the training providers with the upgrading of infrastructure and procuring equipment necessary to support training implementation. Furthermore, trainers in the supported technical trades are capacitated through international and regional partnerships in order to offer improved quality training on the levels described by the higher National Qualifications Framework (NQF).
The second field of activity provides key stakeholders with advice on improving core elements of the Namibian Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) system in line with the Strategic Plan of the Namibia Training Authority (NTA) and overarching national strategies. This work is centred around the following highly relevant topics: (1) Creating a sustainable system for capacitation of VET trainers; (2) Collaborating with the Namibia University of Science and Technology on conducting TVET Research in Namibia; and (3) Providing technical support to the Ministry of Higher Education, Training and Innovation (MHETI) to review the TVET policy. This activity field also explores the synergies between the Promotion of Vocational Education and Training (ProVET) and the sister project Promotion of Business Advisory and Economic Transformation Services (ProBATS) by (4) Supporting the introduction of entrepreneurship and financial literacy training in selected VET institutions and (5) Supporting the identification of labour / training needs in selected Value Chains.
The third field of activity promotes the establishment of a Training Hub which has been in operation since July 2016 and is funded by the European Union to the tune of 7,600,000 Euros. The Hub is a pilot initiative made up of three existing Vocational Training Centres (VTCs) in northern Namibia (namely Nakayale, Eenhana and Valombola VTCs) which are situated in a densely populated region affected by high youth unemployment and poverty. The Hub aims to increase access to TVET for young people and improve the quality of vocational training within the selected VTCs. The idea is to ensure resource sharing and joint planning amongst the three centres to offer specialised and diversified training on higher NQF levels, in cooperation with the private sector.
- After the successful pilot testing, more than 280 trainees are currently in dual-structured training measures supported by 14 vocational schools.
- With support of the project, technical experts have assisted with the implementation of revised qualifications, mainly in Solar Technology, Heavy Plant Operation and Agriculture.
- NTA has been supported to develop and run a tracer study on graduates from 2015 to 2017.
- More than 70 trainers were trained during the yearlong Training of Trainers in Electrical, Plumbing and Automotive with regional and international entities since April 2018.
- The construction works process has started at Nakayale, Valombola and Gobabis Vo-cational Training Centres.
- The E-Learning platform has been successfully launched in the Training Hub.
- An extensive rebranding campaign has been developed to change an often negative perception of the stakeholders towards TVET.