STUDENTS will soon be exposed to job-ready, technical and vocational skills and certification as the Ministry of Education is forging ahead with plans to advance the delivery of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) countrywide.

 This is according to Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson, who was at the time speaking at a Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) TVET stakeholder meeting at the Umana Yana on Monday.

“The Ministry of Education is mandated to ensure that Guyanese children are offered secondary education that will make them academically and economically viable. No child must be at risk of completing the secondary school cycle and not being gainfully employed or able to advance their studies,” Hutson said.

He explained that TVET is a crucial factor for lifelong learning.

“The Ministry of Education, after a deliberate review of its secondary education programme, is determined to ensure that all Guyanese exit their education cycle with some form of certification. Economies will advance when the role and positioning of TVET are well integrated within the education system,” he said.The aim, he noted is to see 60 per cent of graduates from TVET institutions gaining employment within six months of graduation.

Additionally, with Guyana on the road to becoming one of the world’s largest oil producers, he said the education system must be refined to produce graduates who meet the demand of the local job market.

“We have the oil and gas sector and, by extension, a supportive local content policy; therefore, it is important that we generate people to advance this nation,” he said.

Some nine secondary schools across the country have already been approved to offer Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) programmes and the ministry is seeking to have 34 more schools added to the list.

“The facility, audit, rehabilitating and retooling workshops, labs are significant. It is a significant activity in the process; these workshops are targetted in the first phase for rehabilitation, renovation and retooling to bring them to the state of compliance.”

A CXC-led team will be conducting a series of dialogues, workshops, programmes and pre-auditing for the implementation of the CVQ programmes in those 34 secondary schools across the country.

While giving brief remarks at the stakeholder meeting, CXC’s registrar, Wayne Wesley, said the workshops and pre-auditing exercises will see the better positioning of Guyana in implementing the CVQ programmes.

“A robust dialogue and engagement and exchange during this very important pre-audit period will definitely enhance the ministry and schools to be in the position to offer the Caribbean vocational qualification. It is very important then that this period will be conducted in a manner that will allow for this robust engagement,” Wesley said, adding: “I look forward to an agreed consensus and the preparation of the implementation of the CVQ, certainly the CXC team will be at hand to facilitate any query or any concern you might have.”