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GOVET has been providing specialist support to the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in the vocational education and training cooperation with Russia for many years. Future collaboration priorities include the theme of “Economy 4.0” as well as initial and continuing education and training, and the continued development of an online portal for vocational education and training staff. The activities for 2016 were agreed with the partners in Moscow in March. Vocational education and training will also be a focus at the conference for emerging economies (BRICS) at the start of April, for which Russia has the presidency.
Dr. Natalia Zolotareva, the Director General for Vocational Education and Training in the Russian Department of Education and Science, praised the intensive level of support provided by GOVET as part of Russia’s vocational education and training collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in advance of a visit by GOVET to Moscow from 14 to 17 March 2016. Overall, she offered a very positive summary of the development of vocational education and training in Russia and the VET collaboration between Germany and Russia. The continued development of the Russian vocational education and training system over recent years has been quite remarkable thanks to the advice provided by Germany.
Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training and the Russian Federal Institute for the Development of Education and Training signed a cooperation agreement in 2011. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has also existed between the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Ministry for Education and Science for the Russian Federation (MON) since 2012. This expresses the intention to provide support for the introduction of dual elements of vocational education in line with the German model in the Russian vocational education and training system. GOVET is providing specialist support for the cooperation in vocational education and training in behalf of the BMBF.
November 2014 saw the launch of the online-platform “prof-mayak”. This is a portal for Russian vocational education and training staff in which provide material and up to date information and which enables specialist discussions to be held. The model for this was “foraus.de”, the German vocational education and training portal. “Prof-mayak” has been widely accepted and welcomed among the Russian-speaking specialist community. For the Russian Federal Institute for the Development of Education and Training (FIRO) - for which the Ministry of Education is responsible - it has also become a strategic instrument for disseminating technical and legal information and for ensuring access to examples of best practice. New interactive modules were conceived and adapted based on the model of the BIBB's specialist portal “foraus.de”. GOVET, the BIBB and the Goethe Institut in Moscow will help to ensure the continuation of the portal and that its quality is assured.
The mechanisms for the qualifications of vocational education and training staff were fundamentally redeveloped in 2015. After intensive consultation with GOVET, FIRO has developed a two-year master's course for people working professionally in education which will be offered at the higher level Institutes for Pedagogy from December. In addition to this, FIRO is also piloting a qualification programme for technical skilled workers who are not educational specialists. Following the example of the German Chambers of Industry and Commerce, those completing the course will receive a certificate once they have completed 250 hours of qualification activity.
Additional measures in the context of collaboration in vocational education and training between Germany and Russia were developed in more specific terms at the meeting in Moscow. The result of this is that the continued development of the online portal “prof-mayak” for vocational education and training now forms part of the state tasks of FIRO. The intention is that it should increasingly drive forward the dissemination of content and information to the professional public. A further priority is the expansion of a network of “independent centres for performance appraisal in vocational education and training”. To implement this, FIRO is working closely with Russian employer associations and a range of ministries such as the Ministry for Industry, Employment and Economics. As part of the network, methodological and didactic documentation have been developed in order to ensure a higher quality of final examinations in future in the area of vocational education and training. More than 20 occupations have already been restructured within the collaboration. This means that the training regulation for the relevant occupations has been adapted to the current requirements and the general conditions. The German partners have acted in an advisory capacity in the development of performance centres and in the expansion of the network.
Russia holds the presidency of the association of BRICS states (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa). The 8th meeting of the economic council working group for the “development of competences” takes place on the 4 and 5 April in Moscow. GOVET was invited by the Agency for Strategic Initiatives (ASI) and will deliver a lecture before the plenary assembly of the BRICS countries on the subject of “Indicators and prospects for vocational education and training - young people, the state and the economy”. In light of new technological innovation, the conference will also address current challenges in vocational education and training in a range of forums.