Persons who are professionals in their field but who may not have formal qualifications will soon have an opportunity to have their years of experience recognised, as the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Council is planning to embark on a Prior Learning Assessment Recognition programme.

Speaking yesterday at the launch of the organisation’s Employers Recognition Awards, Executive Director, Henderson Eastmond said that the Recognition programme was just one of the efforts to make sure the workforce in the Caribbean was certified…We live in a traditionally “academic culture and we’re now having to change that culture…It is recognized that countries with a tradition of strong technical and vocational education are the countries that are doing well…People want people who can ???do’,” he asserted.

Mr. Eastmond revealed that the system would be a “methodology for which you certify people who are already practising, working…They learned on the job.??

“They have skills and they have competencies, so that’s an effort to certify those people so they can show they have competence, on paper,” he said, adding that persons would be given the opportunity to demonstrate their ability, with supplementary evidence, where applicable, to be offered as part of the assessment.

Efforts to help the public learn more about and benefit from the various elements of TVET is part of a larger regional effort, Mr. Eastmond said, as National and Caribbean Vocational Qualifications (N/CVQs)?? were being discussed at the CARICOM level as a means of certification to permit the free movement of workers across the

Caribbean.?? In addition, he added that the news about CVQs was being taken directly to businesses in Barbados, with TVET having visited more than 50 companies over the last year as part of its CVQ Expansion Programme.

Mr. Eastmond noted that these qualifications would also be used to ensure this island remained up-to-date with alternative energy advancements.?? “Within the next two or three months, we’re going to be able to launch a standard in photovoltaic installation. We’re looking at one in energy auditing and we’re going to be looking at one for wind turbines,” he said.

In an effort to support Barbados’ Human Resource Development Strategy, which will push a demand-driven workforce agenda, the TVET Council will also manage the Competency Based Training Fund, which will assist private sector employers in the training of staff to meet required competence levels for their jobs.

Additional information on TVET Council programmes, including the Employers’ Recognition Award, may be obtained by visiting http://www.tvetcouncil.bb/ or by contacting the Council at 435-3096.

nekaelia.hutchinson@barbados.gov.bb

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