In Fiji, a policy has been formulated for the effective delivery of TVET programs. This policy applies to all institutions delivering TVET programs and curriculum. It takes technology education and training as an important component of education which emphasizes that educating the people should be holistic in nature and proposes the inclusion of UNESCO’s four important pillars of education: Learning to know, learning to be, learning to do, and learning to live together. In line with the government’s priorities, TVET policy aims to ensure that all TVET providers develop and implement training programs that allow students to achieve optimal holistic educational and training outcomes and to promote life-long learning skills among others.
The in-country program conducted in Fiji for the year focused on Generic and Life Skills for Lifelong Teaching and Learning in TVET. The program was held from May 15 to 19, 2017 at the Technical College of Fiji-Nabua Campus in Suva, Fiji. The program was attended by 25 TVET administrators and teachers from all over the country.
The program’s objectives were to: (1) Demonstrate a deeper understanding, awareness and explain the need for teaching and learning the non-technical (soft skills) in TVET; (2) Complement hard skills with non-technical skills; (3) Integrate industry needs and promote entrepreneurship/technopreneurship in TVET; (4) Enable students of TVET to be employment-oriented and enhance their competencies as well as their transferable skills and (5) Demonstrate methods of promoting lifelong teaching and learning in TVET. They are expected to develop system action plan that will integrate the lessons on generic and life skills development into their own institutional practices.
The program implementation was supervised by Dr. Ramhari Lamichhane, CPSC Director General and Ms. Alumeci Tuisawu, Director of Technology and Employment Skills Training (TEST). Overall program coordination and provision of resource materials was arranged by Dr. Romulita Alto, CPSC Faculty Consultant. Local arrangements were made possible through Ms. Rina Roshni Chand, Senior Technical Officer of TEST, Ministry of Education, Fiji.
The opening program was attended by all participants and officials from TEST and most especially the Permanent Secretary of Education and CPSC’s Liaison Officer in country, Mr. Iowane Tiko. He cited CPSC’s presence in the development of TVET in Fiji and the role of developing generic skills in the holistic development of the individual, particularly those who are planning to retire in government service soon. He also wished the participants the best in their upcoming tasks and activities.
During the 5-day program, topics tackled includes: (1) Lifelong Learning in Global Knowledge Economy: Challenge for Fiji; (2) Policy to Provide Effective Delivery of TVET Programs and its Implications on Lifelong Teaching and Learning; (3) Definitions of Generic/Transferable/Soft/Life Skills and Making it Explicit in the Curriculum; (4) Exploring Life Skills & Making Sure Hard Skills Shine and (5) Life Skills for Entrepreneurs. There are also mini-lectures in between the discussions that tackled topics such as (1) Generic Skills and Entrepreneurship and (2) Anatomy of an Entrepreneur/Technopreneur.
The program was well-received by the participants, garnering an average program satisfaction rating of 97.53%.