Upon the invitation of UNESCO, delegates from the Colombo Plan Staff College (CPSC) composed of Officer-in-Charge and Faculty Consultant Prof. Dr. G. Kulanthaivel and Executive Secretary Ms. Adrienne Abril, participated in the Asia-Pacific Conference on Education and Training (ACET): Making Skills Development Work for the Future held at Berjaya Times Square, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from August 3-5, 2015.
In view of the 2030 education agenda, skills development needs transformation for a more inclusive, equitable and sustainable development in the Asia-Pacific. These transformations were discussed during the Third International Congress on TVET in Shanghai, China in 2012 where the participants came up with the Shanghai Consensus. In the light of present developments in TVET including emergence of green technologies and developments in ICT, ACET 2015 was organized by UNESCO in collaboration with development partners and hosted by the Government of Malaysia spearheaded by the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia.
The conference aimed to promote policy debates and dialogues through sharing of national, regional, and international approaches in greening TVET, ICT in TVET, and partnerships and reinforce collaboration among TVET partners. Participation to the conference was on invitation basis and it gathered hundreds of representatives from governments, UN agencies, bilateral and multilateral organizations, private sector, academe, and other relevant organizations.
CPSC, being a key player of TVET in the region, was invited to participate in Concurrent Session 8: Quality Assurance Mechanisms in TVET organized by Korea Research Institute for Vocational Education and Training (KRIVET). Dr. Mohammad Naim Yaakub, Immediate Past CPSC Director General, currently Head, TVET Special Project, Department of Polytechnic Education Ministry of Higher Education, Malaysia presented the Quality Assurance Mechanism in TVET: Organization, Standards & Criteria, Resources & Incentives, Recognition & Harmonization and Labor Mobility on the second day of the conference, August 4, 2015.
His presentation focused on the international accreditation mechanisms of the Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification Commission (APACC) – the process of accreditation, point system, evaluation and award system, and organizational structure. He highlighted how APACC ensures quality improvement through monitoring the actions taken by accredited institutions on recommendations given by on-site visit team. Some benefits derived from being APACC accredited are promotion of institutions through various media and opportunity to be part of the Association of APACC Accreditees (AAA) which will promote faculty and student exchanges and other collaborative activities. As a result of this presentation, some organizations expressed interest to apply for APACC accreditation.
At the conclusion of the conference, the participants put forward their recommendations to governments and all TVET stakeholders in the Asia Pacific region in response to the challenges identified, through the Kuala Lumpur Declaration: Quality Education and Skills Development for Sustainable Future. The recommendations are found below:
1. Enhance the quality of TVET and its relevance to the changing needs of the world of work
2. Ensure inclusive and equitable TVET
3. Expand lifelong learning opportunities through TVET
4. Integrate greening skills for sustainable development in TVET programmes
5. Adapt qualifications systems to facilitate learning and career pathways
6. Strengthen governance and increase investment in TVET
7. Leverage the potential of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for TVET
8. Foster regional integration and labour mobility
Around 650 high-ranking officials with the likes of Secretaries of States, education Ministers and Director Generals, policy Advisors and Directors from Malaysia, various member countries and the international arena attended the event.
For more information on ACET including resource materials, please visit the following websites:
Ministry of Education Malaysia: http://moe.gov.my/en/acet2015
Kuala Lumpur Declaration: http://www.unescobkk.org/fileadmin/user_upload/epr/TVET/ACET_2015/KL_Declaration.pdf
Press statement of ACET 2015 Day 1 can be viewed at: