Catching them young, making them employable

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 08 Oct 2018 09:26:32

The girl students working on a machine tool at ZP School in Ambazari.


By Kartik Lokhande,

Vocational training programme being implemented in secondary and higher secondary schools in Maharashtra is yielding positive results


One enters into the Zilla Parishad Madhyamik Shala in Ambazari and gets a pleasant surprise. For, one gets to see an inventory of tools ranging from an axe to a mixer-grinder. The walls of the room storing this stock of tools neatly are decorated with charts explaining artificial insemination of cow to various diseases, through images.

As one tries to go deeper, one realises that all this is part of vocational training programme being implemented in secondary and higher secondary schools across Maharashtra under Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA). More than 480 schools in 34 districts of the State have been selected for the programme being implemented for Class IX and Class X students since 2014. So far, over 34,700 students have participated in the programme being implemented in 486 Government/aided schools.

As far as Nagpur district is concerned, the programme is being implemented in 30 schools. Different organisations are providing vocational training to students.

The major trades in which students are being trained include multi-skill foundation course, automobile, beauty and wellness, healthcare, sports and physical fitness, retail, media and entertainment, agriculture, travel and tourism, and banking and finance. Different schools have chosen different trades for their students. So far, 10 workshops have become available. “Initially, the response of Headmasters was different. But, regular visits to schools paid off well and their attitude turned into positive. Since then, there is no looking back,” said an official involved in implementation of the programme.

Apart from ZP Madhyamik Shala in Ambazari, ZP Secondary School at Kalmeshwar has got a good workshop in automobile trade. Ramji Mahajan Secondary School has many projects prepared by students on healthcare. At Patwardhan School in Sitabuldi, Nagpur, 42 students got admitted to the course in retail marketing. The students visited Apna Bazar where they were apprised of visual merchandiser, interaction with customers, sales techniques etc.

Lend A Hand India, Pune, is extending technical support to the Government in implementing vocational training programme under RMSA, for free. It is looking after project management, regular monitoring, technical assistance, and overall co-ordination.

The objective of the programme is to enhance employability of youth through demand-driven, competency-based, modular vocational courses to maintain their competitiveness through provisions of ‘multi-entry, multi-exit’ learning opportunities and ‘vertical mobility/inter-changeability’ in qualifications, to fill the gap between educated and employable, and to reduce the drop-out rate at secondary level and decrease the pressure on academic higher education, said an official of Education Department.