On Friday 2 October 2020, the Australia Pacific Training Coalition (APTC) brought together 38 participants from the local and national government, DFAT, Educational Institutions and private sectors in Honiara to review “How TVET Change Happens” and to strengthen collaboration in the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) sector in the Solomon Islands.
Theory of change is a methodology for planning, participation and evaluation that is used to promote how a desired change happens. This workshop focused on how change occurs in terms of strengthening TVET in the Solomon Islands and across the Pacific.
The workshop was facilitated by the Country Director for Solomon Islands and Kiribati, Abigail Chang; and Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, Lilita Waleanisia, and supported by the Planning, Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (PMEL) team from APTC Regional Head Office in Fiji and the Monitoring and Evaluation, Institute for Human Security and Social Change, La Trobe University in Australia.
The workshop is a follow-up to last year’s Theory of Change workshop, held in July. This year, the one-day session convened representatives from government, industries, education authorities, skills training providers, NGOs, the youth sector and the TVET regulator.
Participants discussed common key lessons and opportunities to support TVET sector development in the Solomon Islands and identified priorities for the next 12 months.
Participants agreed to revisit these priorities and review progress against these in one year.
Moving forward, in her opening remarks, the DFAT Second Secretary for Skills, Labour Mobility, NGOs and Volunteers in the Solomon Islands, Renee Paxton, reaffirmed Australia’s commitment to supporting the education sector, including TVET in the Solomon Islands.
Ms Paxton acknowledged APTC for organizing the dialogue with relevant TVET stakeholders to discuss the way forward for strengthening TVET in the Solomon Islands.
Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development (MEHRD), Dr Franco Rodie, said the outcome of the Theory of Change workshop is important for the quality delivery of TVET in the Solomon Islands.
Dr Rodie said MEHRD is on the verge of developing a new strategy for the TVET sector with the aim to deliver quality TVET in the Solomon Islands.
“My Ministry is working closely with APTC and TVET providers to develop a new strategy for the TVET sector. I know almost all the Rural Training Centres (RTCs) are owned by the churches and the government needs to support these to improve access to, quality and relevance of course offerings and student outcomes as well as management of the entire TVET system,” Dr Rodie said.
In follow up, APTC will work with participants to revise the ‘How Change Happens” document, clarify assumptions, and agree on ways to collaborate to implement the way forward.
Participating stakeholders in this workshop are Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Honiara City Council (HCC)-Youth, Sports and Women Division, Solomon Islands Tertiary Education and Skills Authority (SITESA), Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI), Solomon Islands Police Development Programme/Royal Solomon Islands Police Force, Solomon Islands National Youth Congress, Island Enterprises, Solomon Power and a representative of the tourism sector.
Representatives from the skills training provider sector included personnel from the Catholic Education Authority, the Seventh Day Adventist Education Authority, the Education Authority of the Anglican Church of Melanesia, University of the South Pacific (USP), Solomon Islands National University (SINU), Don Bosco Technical Institute, Don Bosco Tetere Rural Training Centre, Divit Rural Training Centre, HCC Education Division, APTC Alumni Chapter Leadership and the APTC.