The State Government has joined forces with representatives from the employers' trade and industry associations and the Federal Employment Agency to sign a "Pact for Vocational Education and Training". This initiative is intended to build upon the "Alliance for strong vocational education and training in Bavaria", which was originally established in 2014.
In the words of the Bavarian Minister of Economic Affairs Ilse Aigner, the aim of the new pact is to send out "a clear Signal" of the high significance of vocational education and training, particularly in the light of increasing digitalisation. The objective is to use targeted campaigns to recruit young people for training occupations.
Plans are also in place for a project to support higher education drop-outs. According to Minister Aigner, the Bavarian State Government is set to invest considerable funding in the pact. The special bonus paid to persons successfully completing the master craftsman examination will be increased by €500 to €1,500. The sum of €17 million has been earmarked for this purpose from 2018 onwards. An additional €10 million has also been made available for the renovation of institutions of education and training operated by trade and industry. Vocational schools in Bavaria are to receive an extra €5 million for technical modernisation.
Bertram Brossardt, Chief Executive of the Bavarian Business Association, praised the new pact. "If we in Bavaria wish to be successful in future, we need qualified and high-performing young skilled workers. In order to continue to secure a supply of such talent, all stakeholders must pull together."
Some criticism has been exercised by Matthias Jena, Bavarian Head of the German Confederation of Trade Unions. Mr. Jena contended that the pact was one-sided without the involvement of the unions. "There is a lack of employee integration," he said. He also pointed out that the Vocational Training Act stipulates that training contents and conditions is a task for both social partners, that is to say is equally the remit of the employee and employer sides. Aside from this, Mr. Jena also stated that such a new pact was "a drop in the ocean" as far as Bavaria's 1,612 vocational schools were concerned. Whilst upper secondary schools had been promised 1,000 new jobs for the 9-year secondary school programme, vocational schools were receiving a mere 100 extra teachers.
Campaigns aim to fire young people's enthusiasm for training occupations
Source: sueddeutsche.de (article in the German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung), revised by iMOVE, January 2018