City school students set to get vocational training

Soon students in metro cities will have to study vocational courses as a mandatory part of the curriculum. The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, which runs vocational training programmes in association with various states, is in talks with the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) to get the scheme implemented.

Schools in metro cities have been showing interest in skill training for their students in subjects like Hospitality, Apparel, Healthcare, and Media and Entertainment, officials in the Skill Development Ministry said.

The Ministry had recently proposed the idea of mandatory vocational training in schools to the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD), as well. The response from HRD Ministry has been positive, according to sources. The issue was discussed in the recently held meeting of the Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE), the highest body on issues related to education.

“Till now we have trained around four lakh students at school level in various states in vocational skills. But we had only been working with the state governments. Schools in metro cities have also started showing interest in skill training, and we are in talks with CBSE to make it a part of the curriculum in urban schools,” a senior official from National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) said. NSDC is an agency implementing vocational training programmes.

The sectors in which the ministry is training students include IT, Retail, Agriculture, Security, Automotive, Healthcare, Beauty and Wellness, Sports, Telecom, Apparel, Construction, and Electronics.

The scheme was specially designed to check the dropout rate of students after Class 9 and 10 in rural areas. The students who received training in rural areas were also given a choice to opt for placement after Class 12. In the last two years, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh has seen 90 per cent student placement.

NSDC, under the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, and the Sector Skill Councils is currently supporting 22 states — Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, West Bengal, Uttrakhand, Nagaland, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Delhi, Telangana, Sikkim, Goa, Gujarat, Assam, Meghalaya, Bihar, Orissa, and Jammu & Kashmir.

Students are trained as per National Occupational Standards. As per the information available with NSDC, the students who were eligible for jobs got placed with an average salary of Rs 9,500 in companies like Honda, Tata Motors, Big Bazar, Policy Bazaar, Marks & Spencer, Max, Portea Medical, Dominos, Eureka Forbes, DishTV, etc. Vocational education in schools is aiming students from class 9 to 12 (Level 1 to Level 4) under the National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF).

NSDC’s affiliated vocational training partner has been roped in by state governments for the implementation. The qualifications for the vocational teachers are defined by the respective Sector Skill Councils. The NSDC also conducts teacher training and participates in assessment and certification of the students along with the respective State Board of School Education.