The proposed TVET school was supposed to open in January 2024 at the current Perseverance Secondary School. (Seychelles Nation)
The establishment of a dedicated national technical school in Seychelles will not take place in January next year as was previously announced, a top government official said on Wednesday.
In May this year, the government announced that a new school for TVET – Technical and Vocational Education and Training – and technology studies will become operational as of January 2024 based at the current Perseverance Secondary School, which opened in 2018.
The director general for Technical and Digital Education in the Ministry of Education, Jean Alcindor, told reporters that this decision was retracted due to mounting pressure from the community.
“We’ve seen a lot of pressure coming from a lot of people notably the Perseverance community, from parents and even youth parliamentarians to leave the Perseverance School as it is. This is why we decided not to use this building. We will identify somewhere else,” said Alcindor.
He said that even if there will not be a dedicated school ready in January, the Ministry of Education is aiming to finalise a strategic plan by the end of the year so that the different components and activities planned can be implemented with the new school term.
Alcindor said that the TVET programme will continue, to prevent as much delay as possible, and in the meantime, discussions have started to find an alternative place for the new technical school.
“We will create this centre. Maybe in one or two years, we’ll be able to start. We’ve already made a lot of progress, the plan is here, the curriculum has already been designed and trainers have already been trained. We have 16 teachers ready for this project,” he added.
In line with this project to implement a formal structure for technical training in the country, there is also a strategic plan being developed.
At the moment the National TVET Strategy 2024 – 2028 is still a draft, and to gain the perspective of different key partners linked to this project, a consultant working on the strategy, Dr Jorgen Billetoft, conducted a presentation at the SITE Auditorium.
He gave details on the different aspects of the strategic plan and the work being done in line with the TVET policy.
In his presentation, Dr Billetoft said that in essence, the short, medium and long term goals of this strategy plan aim for the establishment of a dedicated National Technical school.
Alcindor said that the Ministry of Education plans to implement it as soon as it is finalised.
“We know that 60 percent of students finishing S3 (secondary three) at the moment are oriented more towards subjects relating to TVET. That doesn’t mean that they are weak academically, it’s the direction that the industries are moving towards,” he said.
He added that competency especially in agriculture, the Blue Economy, fisheries and construction “is valued so we have to go in this direction. However, this does not mean that these students cannot go to university. There are a lot of opportunities in TVET.”