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World Bank reviews Seychelles TVET system, to establish TVET school | 15 October 2019

World Bank reviews Seychelles TVET system, to establish TVET school

The World Bank team (right) during their meeting with Minister Simeon (at head of table) and other education officials

A delegation of experts on technical vocational education and training (TVET) from the World Bank are back in the country on a one-week mission, as part of the ongoing dialogue to review the Seychelles TVET system and to establish a TVET school.

The delegation is here to assess the progress thus far.

Their one-week visit also has for objective to discuss the draft Reimbursable Advisory Services (RAS) proposal from the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development on TVET and teacher education.

Lead education specialist and World Bank Task Team, Dr Xiaoyan Liang, who is accompanied by Dr N. Varaprasad, TVET consultant from Singapore and Dr Saiman Malik, yesterday paid a courtesy call on Education Minister Jeanne Simeon and officials of her ministry.

Minister Simeon stated that the ministry is satisfied with the progress so far.

Jean Alcindor, the director general for TVET at the ministry said: “Today is the second visit of the World Bank to the Seychelles to continue to assist, in an advisory capacity, with the setting up of the technical school. Aside from the ongoing advice, the World Bank will also be discussing the TVET policy and strategy which will guide the country for the next five to ten years.”

A representative from the Ministry of Finance, Trade, Investment and Economic Planning was also present at the meeting yesterday to further discussions on RAS.

RAS are programmes offered by the World Bank to its clients in middle and high-income countries. Instead of loaning money to them, World Bank uses RAS as an instrument to deliver advisory services to eligible countries requiring services that cannot be fully funded from the Bank’s country programme.

Under RAS programmes, the World Bank works with countries at their request, providing advisory services, analytical services, and implementation support. The Bank is then reimbursed for the costs of delivering these advisory services.

In its draft RAS proposal, the ministry has requested for advisory services for teacher training, exchanges and curriculum development.

According to Mr Alcindor, RAS will help Seychelles translate its policies into tangible actions and to sustain the technical school.

Throughout the week-long mission in Seychelles, the World Bank delegation, along with the technical school committee, will be meeting a number of public and private sector stakeholders.

Some of these stakeholders include the Seychelles Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), Cable & Wireless, department of foreign affairs, Air Seychelles and Seychelles Fishing Authority (SFA).

Most of these meetings are being held to identify the training sectors such as Information Technology (IT), construction, fisheries and blue economy, and engineering.

Talking about the work being done so far, Mr Jean stated that “we have done quite a fair bit of work”.

“We have managed to do a lot of discussions virtually, visited Addis Abba and Tanzania to look at other systems of doing things. Now we need to know what are the real training needs for various industries, from construction to engineering to transport, to agricultural to Information Technology (IT).”

Throughout the ongoing process of creating the TVET school, the technical school committee had decided to double the number of students attending the TVET school from the projected 500 to 1000 so as to meet the needs of the labour market.

The committee has also analysed and discussed on the school’s curriculum, cohort size as well as operational and training costs.

Seychelles has managed to secure the funding for the TVET school through a grant from China, who has also expressed its interest to assist Seychelles with acquisition of equipment as well as with curriculum development and capacity building.

Dr Xiaoyan Liang stressed that World Bank’s involvement has largely been at an advisory level but noted that its support has shifted areas of focus due to the various changes made to the project plans over the months.

“Originally, the project was to be financed through public-private partnership but will now be funded by the Chinese government and the management of the school was to be outsourced but it has now been decided it will become a government school,” Dr Liang stated while listing down these changes.

The TVET school is expected to break ground in early 2020 at the plot identified on Ile Perseverance.

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