IndiaCSR News Network
GURGAON: Wadhwani Foundation was felicitated by Haryana Chief Minister of Haryana, Bhupinder Singh Hooda during the launch of ‘Mukhya Mantri Shiksha Deeksha Yojana’ in Gurgaon on Feb 5, 2014. During this event the Haryana government felicitated Wadhwani Foundation among others for its contribution towards quality education & successful implementation of the Nation’s first pilot project under NVEQF along with the Department of School Education, Haryana.
National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF) implementation in Government Schools in Haryana has received enthusiastic response, with 13,681 students choosing to enroll for Applied Learning subjects across 140 schools in the State for the second academic year, an increase from 4,500 students in 2012-13.
Expressing happiness on receiving the award on behalf of Wadhwani Foundation and speaking on the successful implementation of the Nation’s first pilot project under NVEQF, Ajay Goel, Director Skill Development Network, Wadhwani Foundation, said “I express gratitude to the exemplary commitment of State Education Department, Haryana, leadership of State Education Minister, Smt. Geeta Bhukkal and unflinching support of State Principal Secretary (School Education) Smt. Surina Rajan, without whose support the success of the NSQF program would not be possible. I especially acknowledge the key role played by schools, teachers and the students in creating a strong platform for NSQF.
While Wadhwani Foundations has provided program management support for NSQF implementation, the zeal and enthusiasm of the enrolled students and their teachers has gone a long way in the great success of this programme. With the committed support of Haryana State Government and the State Education Department, I am sure that the expansion into 140 schools across 21 districts will also be a great success”.
Students completing the vocational course in 2013 have already received ‘on-campus’ job offers from companies like Big Bazar, L&T, Crown Plaza and SRS. Schools and students had to turn down placement offers as some students were below the statutory age of 18 years for corporate employment. The program aims not only to provide skills related to a particular trade but works towards an all round development of the student. In order to achieve this, the students undergo training in Functional English to help them deal with day to day interactions at the work place.
There is an effort to make the students ready for the world of work by constantly bringing them into contact with the industry through Field Visits, Guest Lectures and On the Job Trainings. The trainers work towards making the classroom interactive and do this through role plays, practical sessions, quizzes and in addition this year an online module has also been rolled out which will transform the role of the teacher to that of a facilitator.
Targeted at Secondary Schools, National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF) program teaches employment-oriented courses to students of classes IX to XII as an integral part of their curriculum, in specific industries like Retail, IT, Security, Automotive, Beauty & Wellness, Physical Education & Sports and Healthcare. The program has seen an overwhelming response both by students and teachers alike, with these 140 schools reporting reduction in dropout rates and improved attendance.
Says Ms. Ranjeeta , a student of Govt Model Sanskriti Senior Secondary School, Sarai Khwaja in Faridabad who is now working at Net Ambit , “NSQF opened the door of opportunities. I am self-dependent today and am extremely happy to be able to support my family. I completed my course in IT/ITes sector and received a job offer as soon as I walked out of school.”
Corporates that have used this opportunity to harness young talent are all praise for the initiative. Mr. Sandeep Kumar Assistant Manager , Human Resources, Net Ambit , spoke on his new recruitment: “We were approached by The Wadhwani Foundation and NSQF School Program Coordinators for conducting campus interviews. We at Net Ambit are never shy of exploring new avenues. We were delighted at the quality and response of the candidates. We would be happy to maintain our engagement on sourcing young talent. I believe the vocational education program will go a long way in offering new career choices to students.”
Under the leadership of the State Principal Secretary (School Education) Smt. Surina Rajan, the program has successfully linked education to employability, preparing the adolescent students for the larger challenges of life. Launched in September 2012 across 8 districts of Haryana in partnership with Wadhwani Foundation as a Program Management and Knowledge partner, the NSQF pilot has enabled the students graduating from these school level skill development courses to improve their employability. The Haryana model is being actively considered for adoption by various states like Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
Speaking on the transforming landscape of school education in Haryana, Smt. Surina Rajan said, “The Government of India has sanctioned the expansion of NSQF program to all 21 districts of Haryana with an addition of another 100 schools to the pilot program for academic year 2013-14. The scope of the program has been expanded to include three new skills viz., Beauty and Wellness, Physical Education & Sports and Patient Care Assistant under Scheme of Studies of Board.”She added saying that “State is putting into place its plans to increase the civil infrastructure to cater to additional enrolments in the next academic year and enhance the intensity of industry engagement at local level and with SSCs.”
In April 2012, Directorate of School Education, Haryana (DSE), SCERT, Government of Haryana and Wadhwani Foundation (WF) entered into a 2 year MoU wherein Wadhwani Foundation provided overall program management, co-funding and implementation support to DSE. The successful implementation of the Project involved coordination between multiple entities for curriculum/content development, teacher recruitment, teacher training, industry collaboration, student training, infrastructure set-up, assessment, certification, program management and governance at State NVEQF cell.
Wadhwani Foundation President and CEO Dr. Ajay Kela says, “Wadhwani Foundation is proud of its partnership with the Government of Haryana on the National Skills Qualification Framework pilot. The project aims to enhance employability at an early stage for high school dropouts, while promoting skills and career training. We have received wonderful support from the government. We look forward to further enrichment and extension of the program to hitherto unreached areas.”
The success has come with a mindset change towards the vocation courses facilitated by regular interactions and multiple levels of orientation at periodic levels. Industry receptivity is rooted in the all-pervading industry orientation of curriculum design, content development, teacher recruitment & training, guest lectures, industry visits, internships and placements.