Seven Key Challenges, Modi’s Skill Ministry must tackle

 

FIRSTLY, NONE OF THE 31 SECTOR SKILL councils constituted and funded on public exchequer have any accountability for placing students or ensuring apprenticeship. The number of students placed by them in the last 3 years is at best abysmal. To correct the situation, a modification in the skill policy is needed so that SSC can be made responsible for placement and apprenticeship goals as well. A monthly MIS can also be added.

Two, as a country, India deliberately did not create robust systems  and processes for vocationalization of education at schools (VET). An otherwise scenario would have led to an increase in the marginal productivity and lowered unemployment rates among people who worked by hand. A detailed analysis of stakeholders (industry, students, teachers, school administrators) clearly shows why as a nation we never created an ecosystem & robust system to skill large This will have to be done without any further delay much like compulsory vocation education in schools in Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, China, Indonesia, Philippines etc

Three, In order to become skill capital of the world it is essential that India should focus on-3S  (scale, standards, speed) to  skill 15 to 18 million youth every year with quality  content,  skill labs for practical learning ,teachers, assessors and practical on the job training& apprenticeship. Then only can we expect to  skill 500 million youth across the nation by 2030. Such a scale is possible only if mandated by law for secondary and senior secondary schools. Currently 28.9 million students are enrolled at secondary level and 16.6 million students are enrolled at senior secondary level.

We have no skill labs for practical training at schools  and skill centres. Skills are taught theoretically rather than hands on practical training. Schools in the countries like Indonesia, Philippines, and even Iran have world class skill labs but not us? Lack of written policy-procurement procedures and systems on skill Labs at schools and inadequate financial allocations are to blame and must be corrected.

Four, lack of sector specific  Skilled teachers  and Assessors to at district level is hampering any effort at skilling. There is no  written clear cut policy-procedures or systems for sector specific skill teacher selection, ands on training, and certification. Clearly, boys and girls are wary of joining as career path and financial rewards are not evident. This will have to change.

Five, lack of availability of NSQF compliant and  learner centric accredited content for instance out of 346 NOS(National Occupational Standards)at Level 4 & learner centric accredited content is available only for 32 NOS are  NSQF compliant. These challenge  can be met with aadequate financial  resources for PSSCIVE (NCERT) with stiff deadlines to produce NSQF compliant & learner centric accredited content for 100 NOS within next 12 months.

Six, no data base exists for  MSME where 37% people  are employed.  As per ministry of company affairs 90 %of the companies in India are proprietary firms and 6% are partnership firms. No centralized database is available as registration for such companies is not needed by law. If 18.5 crore people are employed in MSME, it is essential to have centralized plus district wise MSME database for students apprenticeship-placement or entrepreneurship linkages.

Seven, low Image of Skill jobs.  There are no role models or media shows at local level  to promote image of skill workers.TV shows promoting success stories of such local heroes who have made a mark in life will slowly but steadily change image of skilled workers. So, there is a need for creating/supporting  well-crafted media based stories with adequate media budgets.