KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 13 — The technical and vocational education training (TVET) programme requires an urgent update to arm graduates with the required skills for employment, the National Association of Skilled Workers (PKPB) said today.
Its secretary-general Mohammad Rizan Hassan, in responding to a survey that found government vocational programme undervalued both by students and parents, said the current TVET programmes lagged far behind.
“Students are studying ‘history in technology’ instead of the latest technology,” he said in a statement.
“This is because the training given at vocational institutions (ILK) are still based on old technology.”
Yesterday, Khazanah Research Institute released its school-to-work transition survey (SWTS) that found TVET to be undervalued despite the strong demand for vocational and technical graduates both in the private and public sectors.
Data gathered by the survey showed a prevalent misconception about TVET being an inferior educational pathway, and that its graduates continue to be underpaid even in the civil service, data that strongly pointed to disconnect policies.
PKPB, on the other hand, said the perception that TVET graduates get quick employment is inaccurate.
Mohammad said TVET graduates are forced to compete for skilled jobs with upskilled migrant workers, which drives salaries lower.
“They are also affected by the influx of migrant workers,” he said.
“In the end, their pay is ultimately hurt,” he added.
The SWTS, held between late 2017 to earlier this year, polled over 27,000 students, job seekers, young workers and employers.