MESSAGE OF SECRETARY ISIDRO S. LAPE√ĎA, PhD, CSEE

NTESDP ACTION PROGRAMMING CONCLUDING FORUM

Manila Diamond Residences, Makati City February 19, 2020

First, I would like to extend my congratulations to all those behind the successful conduct of the NTESDP action programming activities: Bayan Academy, through the assistance of JP Morgan Chase Foundation, our partner industry leaders, and our friends from other government agencies.

Of course, congratulations to the hardworking men and women of TESDA who helped make this event possible.

Following the provisions of Republic Act no. 7796 or the TESDA act of 1994, TESDA, in collaboration with various stakeholders, led the formulation of the National Technical Education and Skills Development Plan (NTESDP) 2018-2022. Last year, the President Mayor Rodrigo Roa Duterte, signed Executive Order no. 83 which recognized and adopted the NTESDP as the national blueprint for the entire TVET sector. 

The NTESDP puts premium on giving increased access to those sectors that were traditionally and perennially left behind.  

The plan took into account the administration’s priority thrusts: agriculture; infrastructure development; tourism; transport and logistics, manufacturing, information technology and business process outsourcing and other new emerging sectors. With the guidance of the NTESDP, TESDA will boost the supply of quality skilled workers to meet the expanding demands of industries in a growing economy.

TESDA intends for the plan to be implemented fully and efficiently, in collaboration with the government agencies and private companies involved. Thus, we have partnered with Bayan Academy to translate the NTESDP 2018-2022 into specific programs to bring about reforms relevant to the needs of eight identified priority industries.  This is TESDA’s response to provide and meet the demands for skilled workforce for the future. Taking off from the findings of the preliminary research, the action programming process involved consultations with industry experts and leaders through several technical working group meetings. 

The action programming identified concerns that the TVET sector, both from the government and the private sector, need to address. 

The forum of various sectors have raised their respective issues needing attention.  The transportation and logistics sector, for one, cited the training of expert and ethical drivers that should require not only training intervention but also intervention from other government agencies. 

Another example is the concern of ladderized diploma programs, equivalency and awarding of credits for programs in building information modeling. 

The tourism sector also raised the concerns on homestay and technological innovations. 

Fortunately, as a result of the TWG meetings, we are thankful that there were recommendations given to solve the issues and problems identified.

We know that for TVET programs to be fully responsive and industry-led, all of the relevant inputs from the industry players must serve as the basis for coming up with policy and program decisions. 

What is also laudable is the identification of competency gaps that call for either adjustment in existing training regulations (TRs) or formulation of new ones. Our Qualifications and Standards Office (QSO) will carefully study the findings and recommendations.  We will work closely with the industry groups in fast-tracking actions towards TR development. We have started to implement the “adopt and adapt” strategy.

A recent TVET sector study conducted by the ADB still emphasized the perennial problem of jobs-skills mismatch. It cited the limited industry engagement in TVET processes as one of the factors leading to this predicament. 

And so, reshaping of TVET through innovation will be crucial as technical and vocational education and training (TVET) adapts itself to the impacts of social, environmental and economic disruptions.

When we talk about innovation, the vital role of government-industry partnership is very important.

Let me share with you our skills for innovation project or i-Hubs project supported by the UNESCO-UNEVOC. The project aims to capacitate national TVET policymakers and systems’ developers in providing the innovative skills needed by business, society, and learners. 

The TESDA Women Center (TWC) has been selected as one of the ten (10) pilot TVET institutions from Asia-pacific, Africa and Europe to participate in the i-Hubs project. TWC was selected based on its proven experience and commitment to innovation, specifically in the sectors of entrepreneurship, digitalization, and greening.

While we have these several initiatives with industries, we know we still have to do more in terms of industry engagement. We need to improve the way we pursue partnerships and how to effectively sustain them. 

This is why our engagement with Bayan Academy does not end after this concluding forum. TESDA and Bayan Academy will jointly implement the conduct of TESDA organizational diagnosis. This will result in the design of a TESDA structure that is more demand-driven and industry-led organization for the effective delivery of the action programs for the eight (8) priority industries. 

Let us strengthen and sustain industry relationships towards industry-led skills training and development while improving TESDA’s industry mechanisms.

Our Partnership and Linkages Office (PLO) is tasked to explore new partnerships and strengthen existing ones especially with partners in the identified priority industries covered by the action programming.

I encourage everyone to pay attention in the presentations and participate in the discussions. We need your valuable inputs. Please share your thoughts on how the sectoral reforms can be better addressed. 

Your insights will contribute to formulating the right policy and program interventions. 

Rest assured that TESDA, within the bounds of its mandate, will provide the necessary assistance to realize the recommended actions from the sectoral consultations. We will continue collaborating with all concerned to make sure that the priority skills requirements of the TVET sector are improved and made more accessible.

Thank you very much and good morning! 

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