Changing the perception of Vocational Education: Careers Advice and Guidance
In November the British Council Skills Team welcomed delegates from around the world to Birmingham for our UK Policy Seminar: ‘Changing the perception of Vocational Education: Careers Advice and Guidance’. Over forty Senior Policy makers from Bangladesh, Ghana, India, Nigeria and Pakistan joined their counterparts from the UK to address this crucial issue and share best practice in improving the perception of vocational careers and attracting more learners into training.
The event was run in partnership with Education and Employers, a UK charity created in 2009 to ensure that every state school and college has an effective partnership with employers to support young people. As well as undertaking research into the impact and delivery of employer engagement in education, the charity manages innovative programmes to enable schools and colleges to connect efficiently and effectively with employers including Inspiring the Future. The charity works in close partnership with the leading national bodies representing education leaders, teaching staff and employers/employees. A key part of the first day was an insight into some of their research provided by Dr Elnaz Kashefpakdel (Head of Research, Education and Employers) and colleagues.
The seminar also included contributions from the Department for Education, SEMTA, the Association of Colleges, Skills Development Scotland, Edge Foundation and the Careers and Enterprise Company.
The programme was designed to link skills policy and practice and included visits to Dudley College, West Midlands Construction University Technical College and a range of employers.One of the highlights of the programme was the visit to the Skills Show, the UK’s largest skills and careers event, which enabled the delegates to see the very best of young talent showcasing their professional and technical skills alongside experiential careers advice for 80,000 visitors.
The event is one of the series of policy dialogues and study tours for international delegates organised by the British Council every year. Designed to promote understanding of innovative approaches to technical and vocational education and training (TVET) and raise awareness of the global TVET picture, they have proven a great catalyst for UK-overseas collaboration and kick-started a number of excellent initiatives both at home and abroad.
HOW IMPORTANT IS ENTERPRISE TRAINING TO JOB CREATION? EMBEDDING ENTERPRISE IN TECHNICAL AND VOCATIONAL EDUCATION
This seminar, held 7 - 9 March 2017 in Scotland, explored the differing approaches to entrepreneurship training within the wider skills agenda by drawing on the expertise and varied perspectives of entrepreneurs, government officials and representatives from the education sector.
The event addressed key issues, including:
- Should enterprise training be included within or additional to technical training?
- The part played by mentoring
- Means of reaching disadvantaged groups
- The roles of different stakeholders
- Equipping learners with the skills needed for the 21st century
Visits to Scottish colleges, innovation hubs and businesses were also incorporated within the event.