RA Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports Arthur Martirosyan participated today in the workshop on “Torino Process: towards Lifelong Learning: National Dissemination Event”.

Armenia is an active participant in the new round of the Torino Process, which the European Training Foundation (ETF) has initiated. The objective of the Process is the specific focus on monitoring the performance of education and training systems in a lifelong learning perspective, and on reviewing policies for lifelong learning. The essential points of Armenia's lifelong learning concepts were considered at the workshop, with a particular focus on VET access and attractiveness.

RA Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Ruben Sargsyan, Head of the Department for Preliminary and Secondary Vocational Education and Training of the MoESCS, National Coordinator of the Torino Process Armenuhi Poghosyan, Member of the EU delegation to Armenia, Senior Specialist in Human Capital Development Frank Hess, officials of the European Training Foundation and others attended the workshop. The session was chaired by Cristiana Burzio the ETF senior specialist in Human Capital Development, in charge of relations with Armenia.

Highly appreciating the cooperation with the EU in various sectors, ESCS Deputy Minister Arthur Martirosyan noted that the European Union has been closely cooperating with the ESCS Ministry since 2007 and is one of the important players and supporters in VET.

“Through the EU support, the role of the European Educational Foundation should be emphasized, which for many years has been involved in the reforms of Armenia's VET system by providing consultations and capacity building for data and information collection, development, and prioritization,” said Arthur Martirosyan.

According to the Deputy Minister, one of the most significant steps of the ETF is the initiation of the “Torino Process” project from 2010 to the present. “The “Torino Process” is of great importance for a brief, documented analysis of reforms in the field of vocational education and training in Armenia, including the identification of key policy directions, challenges, constraints, as well as best practices and opportunities,” added Martirosyan.

According to the ESCS Deputy Minister, the Torino Process is a guide that defines the vector of reforms of vocational education and training in our country. Arthur Martirosyan also informed those present that the main guidelines reflected in the "RA Education Development State Program until 2030" in the field of VET fully reflect the logic of the Torino Process.

Member of the EU delegation Frank Hess, referring to the concept of lifelong learning, stressed the need to change approaches to teaching. “It is very important what the ETF does: they focus on evidence-based education. We must eliminate the obstacles that exist in the VET sector, and Armenia actively participates in this process,” said Frank Hess.

RA Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Ruben Sargsyan emphasized the significance of Armenia's involvement in the Torino Process. He highlighted that the ESCS and LSA Ministries share a common issue in the labour market both from the perspective of employment and from the standpoint of education. “This cooperation will provide a link between education and the labour market. We are discussing VET, a relatively new sector. I am confident that the work will be productive, and this will be assessed by the results of the upcoming 5 years, at which point we will no longer debate the quality of communication between the labour market and education, but will have a well-functioning mechanism in place,” hopefully noted the LSA Deputy Minister.

According to the Head of the Department for Preliminary and Secondary Vocational Education and Training Armenuhi Poghosyan, the Torino Process is the best tool that enables to reduce the gap between the labour market and education. “We are currently at the stage of serious reforms. The Government has already adopted the decision to submit to the National Assembly the package of laws “On Vocational Education and Training” and related laws. This law calls for significant adjustments in the sector that will enable us to provide skilled professionals to the labour market and contribute to the economic growth,” said Armenuhi Poghosyan. Being the national coordinator of the Torino Process, Armenui Poghosyan also provided the audience with information regarding the specifics of the workshop’s arrangement in Armenia.

In the course of the workshop, ETF expert Abdelaziz Jaouani gave a brief overview of the Torino Process concept and gave the attendees a presentation on the results of the VET sector monitoring and the indicators obtained.

Following the presentation, there were working group discussions, presentations, and observations of different proposals.