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Facilitating Employment Opportunities in the South East

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Presentation on theme: "Facilitating Employment Opportunities in the South East"— Presentation transcript:

1 Facilitating Employment Opportunities in the South East
Shane Rooney County Carlow VEC Adult Educational Guidance Co-Ordinator

2 Contents About AEGIS Who AEGIS serves Challenges for the South- East
Client Challenges Policy Challenges Personal Observations Jobridge- The Benefits Solutions – Work Place relevant skills Solutions –Policy Perspective Solutions- Provision of Workplace relevant skills Conclusions

3 Co. Carlow VEC Adult Educational Guidance and Information Service ( AEGIS)
To offer a guidance service to adults which includes impartial adult education information, one-to-one guidance and group guidance, which will help people to make informed educational, career and life choices. Dept. Education and Skills Operational Guidelines South-East AEGIS centres include Kilkenny city, Castlecomer, Callan, Wexford town, Waterford City, Dungarvan as well as in regular outreach locations around each County. Carlow Service Annual Statistics Clients met for 1:1 appointments: 512 Clients met in groups: 643 General public enquiries: 921 Total: 2076

4 Who is AEGIS for? Adults and young people aged over 16 who left school with low or no formal qualifications or low literacy levels The unemployed, particularly the priority groups identified as part of the Government’s activation agenda. The long-term unemployed and those at risk of becoming long-term unemployed, especially those in the older age groups Those not in work but not eligible to be on the Live Register Those in the workplace with basic skills needs Young people aged over 16 years of age are eligible to participate in BTEI and Adult Literacy programmes. Community Education programmes are open to those over 18 years of age and VTOS for unemployed people over 21 years of age. Where a young person aged between years of age presents, AEGS staff should deal with them appropriately and in line with VEC child protection guidelines. Dept. Education and Skills Operational Guidelines

5 Challenges for the South- East
In the South East region there is a higher concentration of those with low levels of educational attainment within both the labour force and the unemployed compared to the national average. The fall-off in opportunities in construction and traditional manufacturing has a particularly hard impact on certain occupational groups, in crafts and production operatives. There is a need for a strong focus in activation measures on providing career advice and ‘progression pathways’ for the unemployed and on up skilling with accredited qualifications.  FORFAS South East Region Employment action plan- Spotlight on the South East -December 2011

6 Client /Jobseeker-Common Challenges
Re-introduction into employment is a slow and steady process having been unemployed for years. Short course provision initially to build confidence and re-familiarise oneself with routine and challenge. Process of certification can be quite long term where as clients may need employment straight away Need to lay out short, medium and long term goals. Affirmation of academic success is huge be it at FETAC level 3, 4, 5. Constant refrain that I have got hands on experience but I haven’t got the qualifications/ Paperwork to prove it.

7 Policy Challenges Just because you have not tried something doesn’t mean you are not good at it---- Self awareness of own skills V. Training and job opportunities Huge gap in filtering down labour market needs to the general public Need for clients aged 40 and 50 to be given some confidence boosters such as exemption from doing some modules by way of recognition of prior learning ( RPL) as affirmation of experience gained Early school leaving results in need for basic skills acquisition as well as learning how to learn The gap created between unemployment and some high tech positions is perceived as being far greater than it actually is – once clients with the right aptitude try something…they can then run with it. Not lack of ability but lack of affirmation of and self-belief in adult’s own skills Support and encouragement from AEGIS needed at start but subsides as independence and self-belief grows. Making it in Ireland: Manufacturing 2020 ( Forfas)…My Experience..

8 Personal Observations
Clients have gained many “On the job skills “and informal/ non-formal training but have “No paperwork” ie formal qualifications Clients may also have incomplete apprenticeships or have not finished out college courses - Need for widespread RPL System (Recognition of Prior Learning) Programmes need to confidence build and reintegrate these capable workers back into the work force. Ability is not the issue but learning how to learn and building academic confidence Eg. WIT access programme Huge need from clients for flexibility of provision ie free , third level part-time/ Evening provision for unemployed and underemployed job-seekers

9 Jobbridge – The Benefits
An issue for the scheme concerns whether this group represents individuals who are most at risk of extended unemployment. It also, however, raises an issue as to whether JobBridge should give greater focus to assisting those that have experienced long-term unemployment. Other impacts highlighted by participants included that the scheme helped to boost their self-confidence and to identify job opportunities suitable to their abilities, kept participants close to the job market, and helped participants to establish contacts/networks JobBridge ( September 2012) Indecon's Interim Evaluation

10 Solution-Provision of work-place relevant skills
Huge need for far greater co-operation between private Industry and Education providers wrt to meaningful work experience opportunities In the semi-skilled apprenticeship area- non-replacement of construction related trades have left a huge gap ( Forfas- Spotlight on South- East. Top-down approach ie: Government encouraging increased co-operation between employers and education/training bodies Bottom up approach ---need for course provision to match employer needs Forfas Recommendations -Making it in Ireland: Manufacturing 2020 2/3 of dual system of trade education in Germany is financed by private sector – Far greater public private co-operation . Report highlights German model of establishing career paths (dual system, Meister pathway, strong apprenticeship-HE links); Over reliance on generic/ transferrable skills while important there are very few secretarial / business studies related vacancies to justify amount of provision. Specialist industry related up-skilling is not widely available due to lack of resources/finances Eg. Plastic Injection moulding positions remain unfilled.

11 Policy Solutions Attracting employees affected by lack of knowledge of career opportunities & negative perceptions of manufacturing – Recommendations from Recommendation 1 - Establishing Career Paths •Lack of clarity re: career paths linked to education & training v other countries –Germany (dual system, Meister pathway, strong apprenticeship-HE links); –US Manufacturing Institute (stackable credentials) •Career Path Key Features –Main occupations mapped to the NFQ –Learning pathways meet occupation standards & provide progression routes –Pathways that match in-company & formal education learning pathways & provide opportunities for cross linkages or joint provision –Industry-based track to HE qualifications e.g. Meister or Time-served Engineer •Multiple partners required but also industry leadership Making it in Ireland: Manufacturing 2020 ( Forfas)

12 Conclusions There needs to be greater interaction between enterprise bodies, agencies and education and training providers in addressing skills demands in a systematic and coordinated way. Hugh proportion of youth unemployment ( Momentum only going some way to addressing this need Education and training provision needs to have greater alignment with enterprise skills needs both current and future.  This is hugely obvious to me in my daily work Carlow VEC have moved towards this by adding fetac 5 courses more appropriate to labour market needs such as extra Food Science and Information Technology related provision in Further Education Colleges It’s vital in my opinion that adult clients are exposed to a variety of Industry sectors areas- huge push on STEM promotion for under 18 but should be promoted just as much to adult learners……put simply ..just because you haven't tried something doesn’t mean you are not good at it. Carlow VEC FETAC 5 provision in Adult and Further Education area is involved in successfully meeting the needs of the personal services arena such as healthcare support, childcare as well as health related therapies such as reiki and Indian head massage


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