Skilled workers of tomorrow: Federal Minister of Education and Research visits the vehicle academy
Over 700 skilled trades people each year complete continuing vocational education and training (VET) with the Lower Franconia Chamber of Crafts and Trades as master craftspersons or certified business economists under the Crafts and Trades Regulation Code and become qualified for future leadership roles.
Graduates of these continuing VET courses receive support from federal government funding programmes.
On a visit to the vehicle academy of the Lower Franconia Chamber of Crafts and Trades in Schweinfurt, Federal Minister of Education and Research Anja Karliczek took the opportunity to see first-hand how the funding was impacting on young people. She also saw for herself the sustainable teaching concepts of skilled trade VET institutions which are used to train aspiring managers.
At the "Summer of vocational education and training" which the Federal Ministry of Education and Research launched as part of the Alliance for Initial and Continuing Training, the focus is on vocational training and future prospects due to the wide range of continuing training offers provided by higher-level VET. In this context, Federal Minister of Education and Research Anja Karliczek is visiting particular learning locations which are excelling in terms of sustainable and practical teaching concepts, and which are providing outstanding training for the qualified skilled workers and managers of tomorrow.
She also stopped off at the vehicle academy of the Lower Franconia Chamber of Crafts and Trades in Schweinfurt. What makes this special is that around 99 per cent of those attending courses here complete their advanced vocational training with financial support from the upgrading grant available under the Upgrading Training Assistance Act (Aufstiegsfortbildungsförderungsgesetz, AFBG).
On her visit to Schweinfurt, Federal Minister of Education and Research Anja Karliczek emphasized the following. "Vocational education and training guarantees outstanding training for skilled workers and is a key pillar in the economy of our country. We are proud of our vocational education and training system. It provides young people with attractive and varied career prospects. It opens the doors to professional success just as much as it does to a higher education degree.
With the update of the upgrading grant as of 1 August 2020, we have significantly improved financial support provision. We have created an attractive and tailored funding instrument for professional advancement. Funding is now offered across several advanced training levels through to the ‘Master Professional’. As a result, we are specifically strengthening higher-level vocational education and training and are ensuring the supply of skilled workers and managers of tomorrow."
During her tour of the workshop, participants confirm to the minister that this funding is having an effect and making it easier to opt for continuing vocational education and training. Over recent years, the funding opportunities have been significantly improved by means of reforms to the Upgrading Training Assistance Act, and grants have been increased. "Much important work has been completed on the path to achieving equivalence of vocational and academic education and training, and many young, skilled tradespeople are benefiting from this.
Nevertheless, further work is needed to make the vocational education and training attractive. This is where policymakers come in," stressed Walter Heußlein, President of the Lower Franconia Chamber of Crafts and Trades, in his welcome address. In relation to the modernisation of the vocational education and training institutions, much of which is still pending, he urged that funding had to be focused more sustainably.
When training the managers of tomorrow, the vehicle academy of the Lower Franconia Chamber of Crafts and Trades relies on a specific teaching and learning concept. This is particularly focused on the acquisition of problem-solving competency. "By actively trying things out and earning based on work orders, course participants gain experience which specifically prepares them for the demands of practice," explains Ludwig Paul, General Manager of the Lower Franconia Chamber of Crafts and Trades. The participants present showed the federal minister what that looks like in practice.
However not only technical knowledge but also specialist business knowledge is part of preparing future managers and this is also linked to using work orders. The graduates are therefore well-prepared on every level to enter self-employment by starting up a new business or taking over an existing business, or to assume management roles in a larger company.
Source: in-und-um-schweinfurt.de (news portal on the Schweinfurt region) revised by iMOVE, November 2021