Jun 152013
The Philippines could learn from Germany’s  use of a dual vocational system to help address the problem of unemployment, Vice President Jejomar Binay said.

Binay, who recently returned from a working visit in Germany, said the dual vocational system is reason for the relatively low unemployment among German youths.

“We hope we can apply a similar scheme in the Philippines especially with the implementation of the K-12 program and we look forward to a possible cooperation with Germany on this in the future,” he said.

Binay, the presidential adviser on overseas Filipino worker concerns, discussed the matter with German Labor Minister Dr. Ursula von der Leyen during his recent working visit to Germany.

He said von der Leyen, who talked about the dual education system with the chief executive officer of Ayala Corp., “expressed her interest to return to the Philippines to speak more about the dual vocational system of training.”

Also, he said Germany is offering to help the Philippines integrate the K-12 basic education system to the dual vocational system.

Under the German dual vocational system, students take apprenticeships in a company and vocational education at a vocational school.

The training at the firm lasts two to three-and-a-half years, with the trainees getting a certificate at the end of the training.

Binay also noted those taking the vocational courses are treated like professionals.

“Isa ‘yan sa ipinagmamalaki nila. That is giving dignity doon sa mga vocational courses,” he added.

Equivalency of academic degrees

Meanwhile, Binay said he and von der Leyen are exploring forging a bilateral agreement on the equivalency of academic degrees between the Philippines and Germany.

He said the Commission on Higher Education recommended the initiative, having signed a similar agreement with the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports last year.

“We believe such an agreement would lead towards an eventual mutual recognition of degrees for professional purposes…. This would also help in our efforts to facilitate the deployment of Philippine health care professionals under the recently signed agreement between the Philippines and Germany,” he said.

Filipino nurses

Earlier, Binay met with German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle to discuss the deployment of Filipino nurses to Germany.

An initial batch of 50 nurses is to be deployed in 2013 and the next batch of 500 deployed by 2014.

The Office of the Vice President noted there is now a tie-up between the University of Santo Tomas (UST) and the International University Cooperation Education (iUCE).

Under the arrangement, Filipino students enrolled under this program have the option to continue their studies in Germany.

Students who take part in the program shall obtain a fully state-recognized Philippine bachelor degree from UST. If they opt to continue in iUCE, they can graduate with a degree recognized by the German Ministry of Education. — LBG, GMA News

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