STARTING Tuesday, September 4, the two-day 4th High Officials Meeting on SEA-TVET will open at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City.

SEA-TVET stands for Southeast Asia-Technical Vocational Education and Training.

Its theme for 2018 revolves around “Moving Together Towards TVET 4.0” which is a recognition of and in anticipation of Industrial Revolution 4.0.

The high-level meeting is for strengthening the network of national TVET policymakers and practitioners in the SEA region and synergizing efforts for ASEAN integration and prioritizing areas of development and strategies for TVET, specially concerning harmonization and internationalization.

The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) headed by Secretary Guiling “Gene” A. Mamondiong is the main organizer and host of the Manila meeting that will tackle issues and concerns on TVET.

4th SEA TVET Meeting

TESDA expects participants from the SEA ministries of Education, related ministries on TVET, as well as other related development agencies and partners.

They include secretaries general, directors general, directors of TVET of respective Ministries of Education, Ministries of Higher Education, Ministries of Labor and Training, Ministries of Science and Technology, and other similarly concerned ministries from 11 SEA countries.

TESDA invited as well local TVET stakeholders both from the public and private sectors to join and participate in the discussions.

Thailand organized and hosted the first SEA-TVET meeting in 2015 as all the SEA countries have mainstreamed TVET in education systems “and setting it as a priority in their education agenda in view of the fact that this type of education plays an important role in the socio-economic development of a nation.”

Southeast Asian education ministers during the Strategic Dialogue of Education Ministers (SDEM) in September 2014 had “identified TEVT as one of the seven priority areas of SEAMEO Education Agenda for development” in SEA. SEAMEO is the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization, a regional intergovernmental organization created in 1965.”

TESDA said the objective for this year’s edition of the meeting “focus(es) on the regional initiatives, and discuss the policies and TVET education components such as policy, curriculum and teaching pedagogues, and TVET personnel that will accelerate the Southeast Asian countries to leverage TVET education for the Industry 4.0 Revolution.”

Meanwhile, Mamondiong led the launch of the World Cafe of Opportunities (WCO) through Job Linkaging and Networking Services (JoLiNS) at the TESDA Women’s Center on August 7.

Thirteen government agencies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with TESDA to carry out the WCO’s objectives.

They were the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) , Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Tourism (DOT), Department of Trade and Industries (DTI), Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) Office of Cabinet Secretary (OCS), Overseas Workers Welfare  Administration (OWWA), at Philippine Overseas Employment and Administration (POEA).

Furthermore, six private associations/organizations voiced support to the MOU, such as the Federation of the Philippine Industries (FPI), Hotel and Restaurant Association of the Philippines (HRAP), Philippine Constructors Association (PCA), Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), Technical Vocational Schools and Associations of the Philippines (TEVSAPHIL), at Tech-Voc Schools Association (TVSA).

“That’s why we need the cooperation of other organizations to create more jobs, develop livelihood projects, and solve job-skills mismatch,” said Mamondiong, as he referred to the vision of President Rodrigo R. Duterte to create more jobs and foster entrepreneurship from the grass roots. (EKU)