Q. Our Prime Minister has said that if we have to develop India we have to focus on skill development. How important is skill development for the country?
A. It is very important. Skill development is essential both for meeting the needs of the nation, as well as to ensure that our youth are able to become productive members of society and are able to lead dignified lives.
Q. The previous government had set a target of skilling 500 million people by 2022. Is there any new change in it?
A. The National Policy on Skill Development (NPSD) 2009, set a target for skilling 500 million people by the year 2022. This policy continues to be in place. However, the policy is due for a review every five years, and the first review is currently under way.
Q. What should be done to improve the quality of training and make it more job -oriented?
A. To improve the quality of training and make it more job-oriented an outcome-based approach, with active participation by industry in the process of training is important. The outcome of training programmes have to be measured in terms of the success rate in getting their trainees placed in jobs.
Q. Any initiative to improve vocational education and skill development?
A. The National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF) was notified by the Cabinet on December 27, 2013. It is a landmark step in migrating towards an outcome-based approach, which will facilitate various pathways of mobility, both within and between general and vocational streams.
The NSDA is building an efficient Labour Market Information System, which is a national database of trainers, trainees and employers through a central repository of information
NSDA is working with the India-EU Skill Development Team to establish equivalence between NSQF & the European Qualification Framework.
We have also started sector-specific discussions in mapping progression paths in the allied healthcare sector along with other stakeholders - SSCs and other industry representatives of the sector, regulatory bodies, State bodies working in the sector, MSME, representatives, administrative Ministry, concerned, and so on.
Capacity building of the State Skill Development Missions through regular workshops and interactions, as well as through international expertise; Recognition of Prior Learning Pilots in select sectors like Construction, Domestic workers, Gems and Jewellery, Agriculture, Capital Goods, Health, etc., are on.
Rationalisation of Skill Development Schemes will assure degree of convergence in the norms of various skill development schemes in the country while factoring in the special needs of difficult geographic areas, persons with disability etc.
The NSDA is also engaged in developing a directory of all audio visual content and publications pertaining to vocational, technical and other skills referred to as the Online Educational Resources (OER) which will be the fastest medium to train interested candidates.
We are evaluating various skill development schemes and working with World Bank for independent evaluation of five key schemes. Independent evaluation of STAR Scheme has been carried out and we had a study done by LeapRidge to understand issues related to mobilization of candidates.
National Skill Development Agency is also reaching out to Public Sector Undertakings/Organisations/Corporations under different Ministries so that the expertise, infrastructure and CSR funds available with them can be directed towards skill development.
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