NEF, 2005

National Education Framework 2005 in the implementation Vocational Education [NEF 2005]

At present, Vocational Education is provided only at the +2 stage and even here, it is restricted to a distinct stream that is parallel to the academic stream. In contrast to the NPE 1986 goal of covering 25 per cent of the +2 enrollment in the vocational stream by the year 2000, Less than 5 per cent of students choose this option at present.

The program has been debilitated by a range of conceptual managerial and resource constraints for more than 25 years Apart from being viewed as an inferior stream it suffers from poor infrastructure, obsolete equipment, untrained or under qualified teachers (often on a part-time basis), outdated and inflexible courses, lack of vertical or later al mobility absence of linkage with the world of work lack of a credible evaluation accreditation and apprenticeship system, and finally, low employability (Report of the Working Group for the Revision of the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Vocationalisation of Secondary Education, NCERT, 1998) Clearly, the gigantic and ugent task of building an effective and dynamic program of vocational education is long overdue Institutionalization of work-centered education as an integral part of the school curriculum from the pre-primary to the +2 stage is expected to lay the necessary foundation for re-conceptualizing and restructuring vocational education to meet the challenges of a globalized economy.

It is proposed, therefore, that we move in a phased manner towards a new programme of Vocational Education and Training (VET), which is conceived and implemented in a mission mode, involving the establishment of separate VET centres and institutions from the level of village clusters and blocks to sub-divisional district towns and metropolitan areas.
Wherever possible it would be in the national interest to utilize the school infrastructure (often utilised for only a part of the day) for setting up this new institutional structure for VET Such VET centers institutions also need to be evolved in collaboration with the nationwide spectrum of facilities already existing in this sector This will imply the expansion of the scope of institutions like ITIs, polytechnics, technical schools, Krishi Vigyan Kendras rural development agencies primary health centres (and the success of the VET programme is also critically dependent upon building up a credible system of evaluation, equivalence, institutional accreditation (extending to work benches and individual expertise) and apprenticeship Care has to be taken to ensure that such standardization does not become a negative tool for rejecting disqualifying the diverse knowledge and skills that characterize the different regions of India, especially the economically underdeveloped regions like the North-east, hilly tracts the coastal belt and the central Indian tribal region An appropriate structural space and a welcoming environment will have to be created in the VET centers and institutions for engaging farmers, animal husbandry, fishery and horticulture specialists artisans, mechanics, technicians artists, and other local service providers including IT as resource persons or guest faculty The eligibility for VET courses could be relaxed to include a Class V certificate until the year 2010, when the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is expected to achieve UEE but subsequently it must be raised to Class VII certificate and
eventually to Class X certificate when the target year of universal secondary education is reached In no case however, would children below the age of 16 years be eligible for admission to a VET program VET centers could also act as skill and hobby centers for all children from the primary stage onwards, and could be accessed before or after school hours Such centers should also be available for schools to negotiate a collaborative arrangement for the work-centered curriculum even during school hours In order to translate this vision of VET into practice, several new support structures and resource institutions will have to be created at various levels, including districts, states UTs and the center besides strengthening and reviving the existing national resource institutions like NCERT PSSCIVE at Bhopal