The Maharashtra government has decided to allow private institutes to issue degree instead of certificates in employable skills.
Till now, thousands of vocational training providers (VTP) have been offering certificates under various programmes initiated by the skill development department.
Now, applications will also be invited to convert certificate courses into degree affiliated to various institutes of the Union Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE).
Senior officials said they hope the number of private partners willing to impart training to the youth will reach 9,000 once they are allowed to issue degree. Most of these VTP applications will be formalised once a policy note is tabled before the Cabinet early next year.
Majority of vocational courses are provided by the industrial training institutes (ITIs) of the MSDE. Maharashtra’s ITIs have been criticised for poor infrastructure, but, at least, the courses have been overhauled to include training in qualified areas like flight attendants and hair stylists.
“We expect more professionalism to come into training programmes once we make this change. The proposal will be soon approved by the government,” said principal secretary for skill development and entrepreneurship Aseem Gupta.
The skill development policy of the Centre and the State has a target of equipping 45 million youths with employable skills by 2022. Maharashtra had set up a State Skill Development Society to prepare a skill development action plan. As part of the plan, VTPs have been accredited to provide training to youths.
“The VTPs have so far arranged workshops, training, study tours, in partnership with national and international agencies. Once they start providing degree, the trained youths will get more weight in the job market,” Mr. Gupta said.