The Samoa Qualifications Authority (S.Q.A.) will open its Post School Education and Training (P.S.E.T.) Annual Conference at the Taumeasina Island Resort today.
The theme is “Strengthening Partnerships between Post School Education and Training and the Workplace.”
More than a hundred stakeholders from the government, private sector and international organisations were invited to be part of the event.
The conference is an opportunity to bring together the Post School Education and Training Providers, Employers and all Stakeholders to enhance the relevance and quality of training and education to meet the needs of the job market.
Employability of P.S.E.T. graduates is a key focus of the conference.
Discussions will also further inform S.Q.A. of priorities in its collaborative work with all stakeholders towards achieving quality and relevance in the education and training which leads to employment.
The P.S.E.T. providers participating will include universities, theological colleges, technical and vocational institutions and all other formal and non-formal training and educational organisations in Samoa.
A recent S.Q.A. Tracer Study for formal P.S.E.T. graduates in Samoa from 2012 – 2014 reported 59% of the graduates are employed and 41% are unemployed.
The larger proportion of employed graduates actually ‘work for employers for pay’ whereas the rest are self-employed or engaged in other informal paid activities. The study also identified that for this cohort of unemployed graduates, 24.4 % are pursuing further studies while the rest are occupied in unpaid activities.
The S.Q.A. was first established by the Government of Samoa in 2006 to ensure the Samoa P.S.E.T. sub-sector of Education is coordinated, quality assured and given adequate support to meet required standards necessary for national and international recognition. Relevance and Quality within education and training are therefore vital links to recognition and employability.
In its co-ordination role, the S.Q.A. purposely brings together at this Conference its valuable stakeholders – the post school education and training providers with the employers and workplace personnel to strengthen links and seek better ways of ensuring that the education and training is relevant and quality assured for the job market.