Further development of a successful vocational education and training model

Amendment of the Vocational Training Act approved by the German Cabinet

The Federal Cabinet has adopted a draft law to update the Vocational Training Act (BBiG). Federal Minister of Education Anja Karliczek stated: "Vocational education and training in Germany is one of the most successful systems of its type anywhere in the world. Updating the Vocational Training Act will enhance its attractiveness still further. This will secure the future of skilled worker training in our country. Vocational education and training offers young people outstanding opportunities for development. Deciding between initial and advanced training and higher education study is not a question of more or less. It is a choice between two equivalent roads to occupational success."

The main element of the update to the BBiG is the introduction of transparent stages of advanced training in vocational education and training (VET) that leads to higher level qualifications. The intention in future is that qualifications will be designated as "Certified Professional Specialist", "Bachelor Professional" or "Master Professional". This will illustrate the equivalent status of advanced training and higher education study. Because the new titles are internationally understandable, they will also foster mobility for those seeking occupational advancement.

The introduction of a balanced minimum training allowance is a further important component of the updated BBiG. "The minimum training allowance will have an impact in circumstances where companies are not bound by a collective wage agreement," continued the minister. "It will set out the median requirements, create transparency, and increase attractiveness. This is particularly important in sectors in dire need of skilled workers. Trainees will receive a small annual rise in their allowance. This reflects the fact that they learn more each year and are thus able to make a more effective contribution to the company."

Further main focuses of the update to the BBiG include an expansion in the opportunities for part-time VET, regulations for greater permeability within vocational education and training, and improved provisions for legally valid and high quality examinations. Procedures will be simplified and bureaucracy will be reduced. The update thus sets out the general conditions that are necessary to ensure that the structure of the vocational education and training model remains successful in future.

Source: press release of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, revised by iMOVE, August 2019