Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) together with the Bremen University and with the financial support of Federal Foreign Office of Germany is implementing the project: Strategic Plan Georgia 2020 – Strengthening Public Involvement (ZigB). The project aims to give rise to the interest of various groups of civil society towards involvement and extension of knowledge about the Strategic Document - Socio-Economic Development Strategy of Georgia “Georgia-2020” - that was approved by the resolution of the government of Georgia, in order for them to be more involved in discussions for the future.
Within the scopes of the mentioned project the discussion on - The Compliance of the Education Institutions' Academic Programs with the Requirements of the Labor Market - was held on Thursday, December 18, at Tbilisi Marriotti Hotel.
The discussion consisted of two parts: in the first part attendees discussed the strategy in education, and the labor market requirements were the main topic of the second half of the discussion.
The representatives of the non-governmental, international and state organizations were taking part in the discussion. Speakers, based on “Georgia 2020”, and on the strategy of the Ministry of Education and Science and with analyzing the problems between the Education Institutions and the requirements of the Labor Market, presented various issues connected with the Academic Programs and the requirements of the Labor Market.
Mr. Simon Janashia, researcher and lecturer of Ilia State University spoke about the main challenges of the Strategy document and highlighted that agreement on major values was the most important point. Janashia also pointed out the significance of the investment in Education.
The representative of the MCA-Georgia, Mr. Nodar Surguladze, mentioned that there was no communication between the Universities and Employers that made employment issue more difficult for students. Herewith, the requirements of the employer often differ with the academic programs that are taught in universities; therefore, it was necessary to draw out the curriculum with the involvement of the Employers that would make what the Employers want from the prospective employees clearer.
Ms. Tamar Kitiashvili, the Head of the Vocational Education Development Department at the Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia, spoke about the main directions of the vocational education development. Ms. Tamar Kitiashvili also noted that it is impermissible to discuss education only with the scopes of economy. The system of vocational education development shouldn’t be discussed only from the terms of employment, as it also has social aspects. Ms. Tamar highlighted the borough Jvari’s Education Institution example, where students of Apkhazeti region are also studying and this promotes their integration process.
The attendees agreed that the vocational education is low-rated and is associated with the unsuccessful career, thus it is necessary to overrule this cornerstone stereotype approach.
The Georgian Business Insight expert of the economy, Mr. Irakli Lekvinadze, made presentation about the dynamics and the requirements of the labor market and targeted several interesting points, particularly: the job seekers who are employed and are still looking for employment are considered as unemployed, and the unemployed who are not looking for employment are not considered as unemployed. The owners of at least 1ha land are considered as employed nevertheless they receive any kind of income from this land. Mr. Lekvinadze also mentioned about so called “Frustrated Workers” who lost their hope in finding the employment, therefore, they are not seeking for any. The “Frustrated Workers” are not represented in any of the labor market category.
Ms. Sopo Sachaleli, partner at the Law Office of Masurashvili and Sachaleli, highlighted the legal aspects of the emloyment of the graduates and pointed out that the Labor Code of Georgia didn’t make any difference between the terms of employment of the University graduates and Vocational Institution graduates. The speaker also mentioned that the labor code didn’t regulate the terms of the internship agreements that benefits the employers with the free use of the unpaid human resources.
The discussion was progressed with the active involvement of the attendees and the speakers.
Within the scopes of this project IDFI plans to organize similar discussions in the future as well.
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