Education for life and work

Project description

Title: Education for Life and Labour, EDUVIDA II
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Guatemala
Lead executing agency: Guatemalan Ministry of Education, University of San Carlos in Guatemala
Overall term: 2017 to 2020


Guatemalan students have little knowledge of democracy, civic participation, human rights and the rights of indigenous peoples. Moreover, at the secondary school level they do not develop the ability to exercise and defend their rights as young people – either as potential workers and employees, or as citizens in a multicultural and multi-ethnic society. Indigenous young people in rural areas are particularly affected in this regard, having the least access to secondary education and frequently failing to complete their schooling.

Furthermore, secondary school teachers are often insufficiently trained. This is especially true in rural areas where the population is indigenous. To teach at lower secondary level (approximate student age 12 to 15), it suffices to have studied at university for three to four years – even if you do not graduate. Upper secondary level teachers (approximate student age 16 to 19) are required to have a university degree and a specialisation, but this requirement is not always respected. The quality of technical vocational education suffers as a result.


The Ministry of Education has improved the general conditions for raising the quality of secondary education as regards both the development of work skills and active civic participation.


Cooperation between EDUVIDA II and the Ministry of Education is based on the following measures:

  • The project advises the Ministry of Education on how to improve the quality of secondary education. The focus is on acquiring work skills, entrepreneurship and active civic participation. In cooperation with the University of San Carlos, computer-assisted training measures for university lecturers teaching secondary school teachers have been developed and applied. The objective is to foster the teachers’ personal, technical and didactic skills. Using computer-assisted training courses, the project trains Ministry of Education employees to draw up, execute and assess educational policy measures.
  • At the regional level, the project provides support for the education board in Quiché and advice to the National Strategy of School Networks. In addition, teachers and head teachers at secondary schools are receiving training in education management, young entrepreneurship and active civic participation.
  • At the local level, support is being provided for the organisation and implementation of four school networks. To this end, the project is providing further training for secondary teachers and advising head teachers and primary school teachers. In addition to this, innovations in the areas of civic education, entrepreneurship and the world of work are being implemented by secondary school teachers and students as part of the National Programme of Pupil Parliaments.


  • The Ministry of Education has adopted the National Strategy of School Networks and a new curriculum for lower secondary level. This includes the subject of entrepreneurship for productivity.
  • 27 Ministry of Education employees and 28 lecturers from the University of San Carlos are taking part in one-year postgraduate courses for education policy-makers and secondary school teacher trainers.
  • The alumni network is starting to develop.
  • Students and boys and girls from the pupil parliaments have carried out eleven projects on entrepreneurship and civic participation.

Other languages