JIS News

As at March 2004, enrolment in all training programmes of the HEART Trust/ National Training Agency (NTA) including the Vocational Training Development Institute (VDTI) stood at 34,697.
This is according to the annual report of the HEART Trust which was recently tabled in the Senate. With the Hospitality, and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Skills programmes accounting for the highest levels of enrolment, the figure represents a five per cent increase in enrolment over the previous year.
The training institution surpassed its recruitment target by 23 per cent, recruiting some 14,793 qualified applicants for training programmes during the review period. In addition, the organization exceeded its certification targets, awarding 12,136 certificates at the National Vocational Qualification of Jamaica (NVQ) Levels 1 and 2 in various programmes.
Some 3,889 non-National Council on Technical Vocational Education and Training (NCTVET) certification track completers were certified, exceeding the target of 2,842.
The report further said that the HEART Trust’s 16 vocational centres expanded training in hospitality skills, data and call centre operations for the period, enabling a total of 2,545 persons to attain training and certification in the Vocational Training Centres. Over 1,600 persons were certified in level one programmes while the others matriculated at levels two and three.
The performances in level one and special programmes received pass rates of 94 per cent and 100 per cent respectively. Vocational training centres at Junction, Black River, Rockfort, Seaford Town, Buff Bay, Old Harbour and Boys Town had their accreditation status reaffirmed by the NCTVET.
Meanwhile, Falmouth, Port Maria, Lluidas Vale, Newport, Beechamville vocational training centres have been newly accredited. The Above Rocks and Granville centres are expected to pursue accreditation exercises according to the guidelines for the revised TVET model.
Training was also expanded in the areas of hospitality/tourism and information technology mainly at Ebony Park and Kenilworth Academies and at the Runaway Bay Hotel and Training Institute. Eight information technology programmes were offered at Ebony Park, Garmex and Stony Hill Academies.
The report informed that the ten sector-driven HEART academies and institutes performed well in 2002/2003, enrolling 12,992 trainees, eight per cent ahead of original projections. Just over 6,000 trainees on the NCTVET certification track sat examinations, with an overall percentage pass rate of 95 per cent. Meanwhile, the School Leavers Training Opportunities Programme (SLTOP) exceeded its certification target by five per cent with 526 trainees being recommended for certification during the period. Three hundred and thirty firms registered trainees to sit the NVQ exams.
The Workforce Improvement Programme (WIP) continued to make a positive impact with its targeted workforce training interventions. During the review period, 195 persons on the job were awarded NCTVET joint certification. Technical assistance was provided to decrease the down-time for the boiler operations of the Bernard Lodge Sugar Factory, with the training of 23 technicians.
The improvements in the Technical High Schools Development project continued, the report said with a 72 per cent pass rate in the NCTVET exams for the 14 schools involved, up from a 60 per cent pass rate in the previous year. Eleven technical and vocational programmes were upgraded and another was partially upgraded, while mentorship programmes were established in each school with motivational sessions held for students and teachers.

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