News reports from this past month have shown that many countries are rethinking the role of vocational training in their education systems.
In Denmark, www.dr.dk reports that the government is considering new academic entrance requirements to vocational programs that some fear would result in thousands of students being barred from such programs.
Denmark is not alone in it’s effort to “raise the bar” on vocational education. The BBC reported that a survey of British employers showed almost 60% believe the government does not do enough to provide students with the vocational training they need. The Guardian has also reported that a new standard will be applied to vocational education, allowing for diplomas endorsed by companies such as Kawasaki, Honda, and Volvo, but also hotels and even the Royal Ballet School, which is backing a qualification in performing arts.
Similarly, Thailand is also pledging to reform education to meet the demands of employers by reforming their system of vocational education. As reported in The Nation, the Education Ministry shared plans to work with the private sector to jointly design curriculum and training programs that give students real-life experiences as well as an academic education. The Thai government will also work with Germany, Australia, Japan and China – countries that have large investments in Thailand. However, in an earlier article, The Nation also reported that some researchers have expressed concerns that the government could still be doing more.
Similar news reports, collected from online sources over the past month, show a widespread call to improve vocational education, to reconsider the academic curriculum, and for educators to work alongside employers. These reports can be found coming from countries such as Malaysia, Nigeria, The United Arab Emirates, Liberia, Sudan, Ghana, Ireland, and India.