Vocational Education programs and a policy proposal for OSY

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Vocational education is a very important for the youth out of school. There are a numbers of students out of school according to early mirage, income problem, drugs abuse and inequality in accessing formal education in Myanmar. Shortage of family income is another factor contributing to the rate drop-out rate of YOS. In rural areas, according to their geographical position, most of students have difficulty to go to formal schools which are mainly located in urban areas. This program is going to deliver service of providing life skill training for the youths out of school aged ranging from 15 to 25. This paper aims to highlight the current policy of government towards OSY. The policy options and recommendation are discussed. At the end of this policy analysis and this program, the program implementation actor is bringing up a research paper with explicit data which would be available for the other interest organizations from different disciplinary background and depending on the need of OSY, a policy proposal paper would be submitted to the government


The objectives of this program is to support OSY with a vocational life skill training in targeted area in Myanmar.

This program would enhance OSY with vocational and practical skills to be able to work in both industrial and technical job-settings .

In accord with the impact of this program , this paper will produce a policy agenda to government for OSY, a research paper for national and international assistances (Financially and technically)

Review of the literature


Out-of-school youth are a vulnerable population with complex needs. Many face dim employment prospects and uncertain futures. Out-of-school youth are broadly defined as youth aged 16 to 24 who are not in school and who are unemployed, underemployed, or lacking basic skills

In Burma, State education is compulsory, though only until the age of 9. After the first five years of primary education, (standards 1-5) students proceed to middle school (standards 6 - 8), and upon passing the Basic Education Standard VIII Examination, students continue onto high school (standards 9 -10). At the end of standard 10, students must pass the Basic Education Standard 10 Examination (matriculation exam) in order to receive their high school diploma. Students who pass the matriculation examination receive either Diploma A or Diploma B. Those with Diploma A are eligible to continue their education at university.

According to official statistics, Burma's school enrolment rates for children stand at 90 % for primary school and 37 % for secondary school in 2005 with near gender parity.  However, organizations working on education in Burma estimate enrolment rates to be significantly lower than these official statistics indicate. Furthermore, many children who enrol in primary school never complete their studies. Many are forced to drop out as their parents cannot afford to pay for their education and also due to poor learning conditions, according to UNICEF. Less than half of children are able to complete their primary education, according to the UN Special Reporters on Burma.

Therefore the number of OSY has been rising in inexact manners. Yet many research institutions are restricted to independently collect data and work for marginalized groups except from the some handful number of INGOs. Government mostly refuses to give licence to NOGs, CBOs and CSOs. It is also a law acted that forming more than 5 people can receive imprisonment if without permit. Thus, with too many problems with too little attention or actions from the government as well as from international communities are in need to relieve these massive and severe hardships of what the disadvantaged groups have been suffering. It stems from what governement always fabricate the actual data to be able to show the improvement to international agreements on education, politics, economic and social sectors. Therefore, researches conducted in some other countries are more reliable because it was done by cooperation between government and non-state actors, and they also do not violate the law of freedom of information. That is also the reason why Burma is apparently regarded to be situated on the dark side of the world and global mainstream of information coverage upon political transparency.


Discussion on OSY issues in Myanmar

According to UNFPA, school drop-out rate is highest at Grade11 (55.4%). Percentage of drop-out from Grade 11 is 60% for both sexes. OSY rate in rural areas are 25% higher than urban. There are altogether 90% of OSY are unemployed. What are these 90 % of unemployed OSY doing? What are they going to do in the future? Who is going to support these massive numbers of OSY? That is something it primarily and initiatively must be done by government.

Existing Policies and Facilitating Factors

Under the MOST, Ministry of Science and Technology, there is one DTVE (Department of Technical and Vocational Education) it has 26 Technological Universities, 3 Government Technological Colleges and 6 Government Technical Institutes which are established across the country especially in urban areas.

However, the most proving factor on why the OSY is increasing in Myanmar is as follow

Entire above mentioned state-run 36 institutions and universities can be only attended after passing Grade 11 with a certain grade.

Thus, OSY has absolutely no chance to attend and get the opportunity of state-run formal technical and vocational know-how skills for their life.

Government does not still have a policy to identify or support OSY because they report the fabricated data to show improvement of international agreement on Education, political and etc.

Discussion on Involvement of Private actors to OSY issues

Tertiary technical and vocational school, Like ILBC (International Language and Business Center) and Yangon International schools are very famous but for OSY it is just a dream.

Privately owned technical schools are emerging around Rangoon. So far there are nine privately owned technical and vocational training centers with are approved by City and Guilds UK, which offers one of the best and cheap vocational programs.

However, their rules are not also for most of OSY, because to be able to get admitted, participants need to pass matriculation, the flexibility here is that any youth whose background is from Art or Science and regardless of their grades, they can join City and Guilds UK recognized technical training, however, money matters still! City and Guilds vocational trainings are also privileged for the one who pass Grade 11 and has money.

Discussions on the CSOs involvement on OSY issues

When the state is failing, when the private actors are not responding to the needs of OSY, Civic Society Organizations are undeniably the best institutions which can bring some intuitive and initiative changes to OSY. So far, in Myanmar many Civic Society Organizations are emerging at the weakest level of what the state is failing to perform. CSOs are formed without getting approval from the LGUs, because government does not give license to any CSOs in Myanmar. CSOs work independently with their own values and policy. So that any issues exposed in their environment can be seen, touched, felt and taken actions by the civic society actors despite there are no published papers and research about OSY in Myanmar. The existing problems can be tackled down at the root level with the active involvement with the civic society institutions if they are technically, financially and legally supported.


A policy proposal

Government should formulate a new policy for OSY and accept policy proposal conducted by experts or CSOs.

OSY are out of schools with different reasons (as mentioned above) however as long as they are still increasing in numbers, actions for them must be taken.

On job training at the state-own or privately owned industrial and technical jobs settings after the training

Government has to undergo institutionalizing and allocating budget into providing life-skills trainings for free to OSY like primary education. Or, letting them attend training on loan. (After working they must pay back)

Pros and Cons of adapting this policy


Skill-workers increased for the demanding industrial needs

Employment rates would go up

Income generation to OSY as well as to their family

Human resource development increased

Man power increased

Brain-drain prevented


OSY rates may increase according to trend

Youths might follow only money and enjoy working life rather than of school education

Low impression and trusts on formal education

Worker class may increase

Child Labor could increase

Extra expenditure on national budget

Implementing Institution ( Action for OSY )

YDIN , Youth Development Initiative Network, is going to do need assessment (Field Research) and identify on how many of exact OSY are in that particular areas and who are in need of this program

YDIN is going to mobilize OSY with financial assistances and send them to vocational trainings in urban areas

YDIN is going to work together with selected the technical training institutions to monitor and evaluate the impact of this projects to OSY

At the end of the programs , YDIN is going to write a policy proposal for the government policy agenda, and a field research paper for national and international assistance ( Financially+ technically)

Brief History about YDIN

Youth Development Initiative Network (YDIN) is a self-reliant group which is comprised of 50 young Arakanese members and it was formally known as Gateway to Unified Free Speech (GUFS). The group was set up in March 2004 aiming to bring about the capacity building resources for the young people. YDIN envisions that "every youth deserves a quality education and opportunity to participate in every development process of the nation."

YDIN aims to "increase the level of knowledge and skills of the youths by developing the informal education programs." The primary organizational objective of YDIN is to help the youths develop their social capital through informal education and capacity building programs and networking with different level stakeholders. During the last seven years, YDIN has been the key source for youth capacity building and has become a focal point for sharing opportunities, aspiration, ideas and experiences by organizing discussion groups, workshops and training on issues affecting the youth in the communities. It is currently networking with many different international organizations such as American Embassy, American center, British Embassy, British Council, Save the Children, Action Aid and Educasia as well as local organizations such as Local Resource Centre, Karen Development Network, and Rakhine Thahaya (Welfare) Association, Thingaha Association, Shalom Foundation, Association of Ethnic Youths, Yaung Chi Thit Organization (YCTO) and many other groups. That's networks have been a great importance to its organizational and individual development.

YDIN has contributed in the actual governmental and international development goals on education by promoting non-formal education training in both rural and urban areas. YDIN team responded at the Nargis Cyclone relief programs and has done Giri Cyclone relief and rehabilitation actions very recently. It has also consulted various trainings on community development tools and concept with local CBOs and other networking institutions.

Targeted beneficiaries

Approximately 90 OSY from targeted three villages

Farmers, fishermen and local small scale machinery owners (EX, if the machines are broken, it is difficult for them to bring them to city.)


YDIN, Youth Development Initiative Networks




Privately Owned Training centers


Factories or technical job settings

International or national donors

Program Summary

Target group OSY 90

Target Areas 3 villages

Project location Rangoon/3 villages

Time lines 6 months

Service Suppliers (to name)

Monitoring & Evaluation YDIN

Policy Proposal YDIN

Budget Proposal GOs, DONERS