Friday, February 1, 2013
Cuba Prioritizes Technical & Vocational Teaching
By Arailaisy Rosabal García / Radio Cadena Agramonte Collaborator.
It is today a task of major importance to increase Cuba’s economy productive indicators. After several years in which the country consumed much more than what it really could, and as a consequence of its expenses due to imports, the macroeconomic numbers were flamboyant. So, Cuba needs now to invest resources and time in its most important branches of production with a clear idea in our minds, we have to produce.
For such a reason, the island nation has implemented some measures which range from granting land plots in free usufruct, to changing the way to manage cooperative farms and even it has given a boost to the training of a workforce that might be crucial in key fields of our economy.
Considering this, the Cuban education system made some changes in 2010, and gave priority to the Technical and Vocational Education (ETP).
Based on the characteristics, potentialities and needs of this province, the selection and training of secondary school students have been reoriented to courses dealing with agriculture, animal husbandry, construction, accountancy and railroad exploitation.
All this responds to the need for speeding up the incorporation of a young workforce into the production sector, because even though the country recently underwent a manpower reduction, it is critical the lack of qualified personnel in our main production areas.
Objectively speaking, it is urgent to salvage the infrastructure of ETP schools, which obviously includes the repair and even construction of labs and workshops, given that over 60 percent of the syllabus is made up by technical subjects.
Until now, the solution the country has found out is the setting up of the so-called attached classrooms in the production and service centers, under the premise that students must learn working as they gain the skills contained in the syllabus.
Nevertheless, a handicap is the lack of interest among the young people for these careers, of which the Cuban society has a great deal of responsibility, for they have not received the recognition they deserve.
All of a sudden, trades began to fade in Cuba because there were more attractive and best-paid offers, like –for instance- being a professional. So it was hard to find someone who wanted to be a technician or a skilled worker.
Today it is a priority for Cuba to increase student enrollment in ETP courses as well as to guarantee a better quality in the training of these students, considering that they are a premier workforce to enforce the current updating process in the Cuban economy is engaged.
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