The initial findings of the Review on the Regulatory Framework and Provision of Post-secondary Vocational Education and Training were presented in Tirana with the participation of national partners, private sector representatives, higher and vocational education, and training providers.
International experiences show that provision of education at the post-secondary level is a pertinent and valuable educational option, contributing to better skills of young students without work experience and employees who want to improve their educational levels to gain a better position in the job market; as well as to ensure that education is relevant for the present and future skills needs of employers. However, the potential of VET-5 is not adequately exploited in the Albanian context, even though it is already significant.
The review has the objective to analyse the needs and scope for extending the offer of vocational education and training to post-secondary levels (including VET at tertiary level), as well as to identify the potential for increased collaboration between education and training institutions at tertiary level and the private sector, more specifically in the ICT, tourism, and construction sectors.
Initial findings of a survey conducted during this process with around 107 businesses show that:
• the sectors of ICT, tourism and construction are well acquainted with upper secondary vocational training, they have hired employees with this education and see the added value in comparison with general education.
• 47% of all participating companies have employed VET-5 graduates, and the better or more suitable qualification of VET-5 graduates compared to high school graduates and vocational education graduates is noted by 86% of the companies.
• Even with far from perfect VET-5 educational system, graduates find their way in the labour market.
• the cooperation between the educational institutions and companies in the implementation of these study programs is rather limited.
• Most respondents consider employee training in the areas of technology/new professional methods, ICT, planning and management, communication to be necessary. All these could be provided by VET-5 programmes.
• Only 25% of the employers answered that the degree (diploma) is the most important criterion in the recruitment process. 79.4 answered that they value work experience.
The next phase of this study, the experts will engage with all the national partners to understand the gaps in the legal and regulatory framework and with the providers to identify best practices. The report is expected to be published during the first quarter of 2022. The review is done by UNDP in the context of the Skills development for Employment Programme financed by the Swiss Government.