Work-based learning and apprenticeship law – public consultation
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The Ministry for Education and Employment has announced an internal and external consultation process to develop the proposed Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeship Act which provides a framework for the development of effective Work-Placements, Apprenticeships and Internships.
The Ministry said that the proposed Act is based on:
• research conducted by the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP) with local learners, educators and employers;
• a review of international legislation on traineeships and benchmarking of best practices within countries leading in the field of vocational training.
The main developments brought about by the proposed Act are the introduction of the:
• Government subsidy to bridge the gap between the learner's current income and the minimum wage rate;
• Rights and obligations of learners as employees, for the duration of the Work-Based Learning part of the Training Programme, in compliance with the Employment and Industrial Relations Act, Young Persons' Employment Regulations, Social Security Act and the respective subsidiary legislation;
• Governance structure to protect the rights and obligations of trainees and employers.
The Ministry explained that work-based learning, apprenticeships, and similar forms of learning, are regarded as an important part of any country's development and the provision of high-quality services. Vocational education and training systems that use work-based learning tend to be more effective in aiding the transition of young people into jobs. By alternating between school and work, learners develop the practical knowledge and skills employers seek.
"Work based learning also supports the development of the soft skills of the learner, which employers often refer to in discussions about mismatches in the labour market. These types of skills are difficult to acquire in a traditional school setting. In short, high-quality work based learning programmes are about preparing individuals and aiding development of knowledge, skills and competences that are in demand in the labour market."
Developing policies and programmes to ensure the availability of a high-quality, highly-skilled labour force, is currently broadly promoted at European and Member State level, aiming to improve service quality, capacity, capability, efficiency and to meet the demands of contemporary economies, the Ministry for Education and Employment said.
The consultation document will be available here
Ways to respond:
Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
WBL Consultation Office
Office of the Permanent Secretary Ministry for Education and Employment
Great Siege Road
Floriana VLT 2000
Photograph: DOI/Kevin Abela