21 May 2016
 The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) have forged a partnership to work together for the development and delivery of Agri-mechanization Technology training courses in the country.
The collaboration in technical support and training will include the identification and appointment of course coordinators for each sub-project or training courses, according to the agreement of the two parties represented by Irene Isaac, TESDA Director General and Matthew Morell, IRRI Director General.
Isaac hailed the signing of the agreement, saying that giving the people the proper skills and knowhow on using agricultural machinery and equipment will help in the productivity of the land, create jobs and contribute to national development.
Farmers and the agriculture sector in general are also taking the brunt of the El Niño phenomenon.
“One way of helping the people who tend the fields cope with El Nino is training them in the operation and basic routine maintenance of rice machinery for land preparation, crop establishment, crop care, harvesting and threshing, drying and milling,” Isaac said.
Under the agreement, IRRI will prepare and provide the training curriculum on relevant courses such as farm machinery, safety and operation training course, based on the needs of TESDA.
It will provide assistance to TESDA in the development and production of training materials.  It will also make available resource persons for selected topic as well as facilitate activities identified in the course.
TESDA will handle the identification and selection of prospective participants,  provide resource persons on specific topics and develop training manual needed in the training course.
At the end of the course, graduates will undergo evaluation and assessment by IRRI.