FUSE GA, October 2015
Tesda on job mismatch: Pinoys still prefer ‘saleable’ courses
Achieving balance in the distribution of manpower or job mismatch
remains elusive for the government as Filipino students still tend to
favor “saleable” college courses that would land them white-collar
Irene M. Isaac, Tesda’s Deputy Director General for Policies and
Planning, conceded manpower planning has been a difficult task,
although the agency had called for a moratorium on courses that don’t
meet the skills and demands of the market.
“In 2012, we didn’t even use half of our scholarship allocation for
agriculture due to lack of applicants,” Isaac said, as she addressed
last October the regular general assembly and 22nd anniversary of the
Foundation for Upgrading the Standard of Education (FUSE).
Citing tech-voc education in the implementation of K-12, of which the
Technical Education and Skills Development Authority is one of the
overseers, Isaac stressed that Tesda will serve as facilitator between
basic education and technical-vocational institutions in the adoption
of the tech-voc track in senior high school (SHS).
Figures from the Department of Education (DepEd) show when SHS starts
next year, 4,553 private and public schools will open up 596,000 slots
to students who will take the tech-voc livelihood track.
This is 48.7 percent of the estimated 1.2 million enrollees in SHS.
Isaac also urged the private sector to assist the agency in its
performance audit, as envisioned under the Philippine Qualifications
Framework (PQF), of schools offering tech-voc courses “because, in the
end, they will be the users of our graduates.”
The PQF was institutionalized by President Aquino in 2012 to address
the job skills mismatch and raise the level of competencies and
qualifications of Filipino workers.
FUSE president, Fr. Onofre G. Inocencio, Jr., SDB, who is also the
superintendent of Don Bosco Schools and TVET Center, pointed out that
most prospective students of SHS, based on a DepEd survey, would
choose the academic track, while many students from poor families
would opt for the tech-voc curriculum so they can seek immediate
employment after high school.
There are about 20 TVET (Technical Vocational Education and Training)
Centers in the country with an annual enrollment of some 4,000
The two additional years in senior high will serve as a specialization
period for high school students, whether in vocational skills, music,
the arts or sports. High school graduates have the option to pursue
jobs with a basic education diploma or proceed to college.
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