HEART NSTA Trust 2022

THE DECADE OF THE 90s INTO THE 21st CENTURY Expanded Mandate and TVET Governance With the change of political administration in 1989, the foundations of HEART were well and truly laid to meet the moment of a profound time of change in the world. The rise of the new technologies of the Information Era were redefining the nature of life and work. Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) systems throughout the world were struggling to cope with the rapidly changing environment that was requiring more marketdriven approaches to the training of workers for the Labour Force, over the traditional supply-centred methodology. Faced with the dual challenge of continuing to build a coherent training system (the supply-side issue) while adapting training institutions to meet the new requirements of the market (the demand-side issue), HEART started to give serious consideration to the matter of training coordination and governance. In the wider public education and training system, the Ministry of Education was also looking to rationalize secondary education in Jamaica with the Reform of Secondary Education (ROSE) Programme that introduced a common curriculum in Grades 7-9 level that also covered vocational education under a new subject called Resource and Technology (R&T). In 1991, the Government of Jamaica renamed the HEART Trust as the HEART Trust/National Training Agency and expanded its role to include TVET at the secondary level. In what was seen as a radical move at the time, new operational objectives were added to the still relatively young organisation to achieve: • Optimum resource utilization, cost- effectiveness and operating efficiencies in the institutions which comprise the TVET system; • Expansion and continued development of the TVET system in order to meet the effective demand for skilled and semiskilled workers; • Catalysing of greater incorporation of the private sector in the direction and delivery of TVET in Jamaica; • Compliance of instructional and administrative arrangements in all training institutions with established standards; and • Effective administration of the HEART Trust Act with respect to employers’ contribution tax and trainee welfare. Experienced Human Resource Management Executive Robert Gregory was appointed in 1991 as the Executive Director of HEART to lead the Agency into this new dispensation centred on deepening linkages with employers and the business community, deregulating the provision of training, and imagining innovative ways of delivering training to disadvantaged groups. It was a formidable challenge. Yet, HEART pressed forward. In 1992 the HEART Trust Act was amended to give legal effect to the National Training Agency concept as well as to create the National Council on Technical and Vocational Education and Training (NCTVET) for the purpose of accrediting and registering TVET institutions and awarding the NVQ-J certification. The NCTVET, later established in 1994, operates as an independent authority “to develop and promote a certification system that is relevant, responsive and effective…and has the responsibility to develop standards, accredit programmes, develop assessments and award certificates and diplomas to individuals who have demonstrated competence in vocational areas.” Under its Rationalisation of TVET model, HEART/NTA also made significant investments in the upgrading of all of the island’s technical high schools in collaboration with the Ministry of Education. History in a photograph: The first Chairman of the HEART Trust Board, Steadley Webster, 1982-89 (left) in a memorable moment with former Board Chairman, Alister Cooke, 1989 - 2006 (centre) flanked by former HEART National Programme Directors, Pamella McKenzie and Delores O’Connor and the first Managing Director of HEART, Dr Joyce Robinson at a HEART function in 2003. Entrance to the Vocational Training Development Institute at Gordon Town Road, St. Andrew founded in 1970 arising from a tripartite agreement among the ILO, UNDP and the GOJ. The VTDI came under the management of the HEART Trust in 1990. CONTINUED ON PAGE 23 14

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