BEIJING, June 2, 2010 – On June 1 the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved a loan of $40 million to support technical and vocational training in Liaoning Province and Shandong Province in China.
The Liaoning and Shandong Technical and Vocational Education and Training Project focuses on improving the quality and relevance of technical education in eight schools in the two provinces. It will also produce lessons from this experience as a guide for future school reforms and policy development on a national level. Through its involvement in the project, the World Bank will help schools connect their curriculums more closely with competencies sought by industry.
The first part of the project tackles school-based reforms and innovation. It will introduce reforms that provide goods, services, and works to strengthen school-industry linkages and improve school management. A modular competency-based training (CBT) curriculum with instructional materials will be implemented to improve student assessment. Instructors will be equipped to use the new CBT curriculum and expand their industry experience. Facilities and equipment for CBT programs will be upgraded.
The second part involves knowledge development, policy studies and capacity building. This will be achieved through improving monitoring and evaluation to capture lessons from reforms under part one of the project, then disseminating lessons produced and building capacity for planning and implementation of reforms.
"We hope these new approaches will eventually lead to schools producing graduates with better skills and more favorable labor market outcomes" said Liang Xiaoyan, World Bank Senior Education Specialist who is in charge of the project.
Liaoning Province with 43 million people is one of China’s most important industrial bases. It is the largest economy in Northeastern China and ranks eighth in the country in terms of GDP. Shandong Province with 94 million people is China’s second largest province. It is also one of China’s richer provinces ranking second in terms of GDP. In both provinces, the growth of capital-intensive manufacturing and services is increasing the demand for education and skills.
The design of this project is inspired by a similar project approved for Guangdong Province in 2009. These projects benefitted from the experience gained from three earlier projects that the World Bank supported in China in areas related to technical and vocational education, including the Vocational and Technical Education Project completed in 1997, the recent China Vocational Education Reform Project completed in 2002, and the Labor Market Development Project completed in 2006.