Public-Private partnership in Vocational Education and Training (VET) and the EU Education Support Programme in Azerbaijan: way forward for the Action Grants Modernizing VET Centres

The VET system in Azerbaijan has been undergoing changes in recent years. The driving force has been the fast-changing labour market and socioeconomic situation. Many strategic initiatives have been proposed at state level for strengthening the VET system so that it can contribute to the development of the economy and its diversification. The potential for having effective VET is becoming clear, and : since 2014, VET has been recognised as an important driver of socioeconomic development. The Strategic Roadmap for VET adopted in December 2016 sets out the short-, medium- and long-term vision for VET development. Important opportunities now exist to change the system for the better. Important efforts made by the government in the VET sector are supported by the European Union (EU) and donors.
The European Union (EU) Annual Action Programme 2014 (AAP 2014) for Azerbaijan includes an EU intervention of 19M€ in support of education. The EU Education Support Programme covers:
- Technical assistance for support to VET reform implementation;
- Technical assistance for the development and implementation of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF);
- A grant scheme for multifunctional VET centres to support the Strategic Roadmap in VET;
- Twinning project to support the Ministry of Education with adherence to the EHEA and implementation of Bologna objectives;
- Technical assistance for support in policy and management of Research Development and Innovation (RDI) in HE;
- A grant scheme for strengthening civic participation, governance and inclusiveness of the education system;
- Technical assistance for support the Ministry of Education to plan, steer and monitor the reform of the education system.
The ETF is supporting the EU Delegation to Azerbaijan with the monitoring of the EU Education Support Programme in the period 2017 - 2019. The joint monitoring has a special focus on the Action Grants for VET centres, which aim to increase the attractiveness and labour-market relevance of all levels of VET. The specific objective of the 2017 monitoring is to provide relevant information and findings at the early stage of implementation of the Action Grants in order to enhance the efficient and effective kick off and implementation of the Grants.
The objectives of this workshop are to:
- promote and increase the awareness of different actors about Action Grants by highlighting the objectives, resources mobilization and provide opportunities for active engagement in implementation;
- promote and increase the awareness of different actors about contribution of the Action Grants to the Strategic Roadmap for VET, with focus on public-private partnership in VET;
- contribute to preparation of methodology for efficient monitoring to increase transparency and mutual understanding to effectively contribute to supporting measures of the Strategic Roadmap in VET;
- share best practice from Azerbaijan and EU Member States in relation to VET schools development and engage in the process of reflection to inform the policy making process and to support development of tools for monitoring for VET development in Azerbaijan..
Participants in the workshop will include representatives from government institutions, the Ministry of Education, the State Agency for Vocational Education, the organizations implementing Action Grants, VET schools, the EU Delegation, donors and the ETF.

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