South Sudan: Consultancy for Rapid Assessment of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Sector in South Sudan

Organization: UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
Country: South Sudan
Closing date: 30 Jan 2018

Introduction and Background

Introduction

The focus of these terms of reference (TOR) is intended to guide the rapid assessment of the technical and vocational education and training (TVET) sector in South Sudan.

Background

South Sudan faces many challenges that threaten its sustainable and peaceful development including but not limited to on-going internal conflict, political instability, overreliance on aid and oil production, high levels of poverty, lack of infrastructure and public health systems, underdeveloped non-oil industries, 80% living in rural areas, and more. Urban poverty has increased from 49% in 2015 to 70% in 2016; 6 million people are food insecure; and the rate of inflation peaked at 550% in September 2016 and the rate is now 102% as of September 2017.[1] The country also suffers from a severe lack of private sector investment. The country faces high rates of child labour and a 19% youth unemployment rate.[2] The challenges are further heightened at the state level and by gender. Youth employment in the state of Jonglei was 31.6% in 2011 and 6.5% in Eastern Equatoria, while 23.6% of female youth were classified as inactive in employment.[3] The involvement and focus on ex-combatants is also needed to address South Sudan’s challenges. There is now an estimated four (4) million displaced individuals and refugees in South Sudan due to the conflict.[4]

Given that South Sudan is one of the youngest countries in the world, governmental and public infrastructure is severely limited, and the government capacity and delivery has nearly been halted due to the conflict. The economy has crippled as a result.

Although the education sector has already been facing low levels of investment (2.6% of public expenditures as of 2015), the current crisis further exacerbates the situation, and the technical and vocational education and training (TVET) sub-sector within education is the lowest funded education sub-sector. Thus, to address the current conflict and socio-economic situation in the context of fragile states, support Sustainable Development Goals 4 and 8 and foster UNESCO Recommendations Concerning Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), UNESCO through the Capacity Development for Education (CapED) programme will utilize TVET as a reconciliatory intervention as many partners within the country see TVET as being able to bring about peaceful development towards a shared and common economic goal and providing a foundation for strong national development.

However, based on a joint-report by UNESCO and GIZ, “TVET Policy Review – South Sudan” (2015), South Sudan faces immense challenges in the TVET sector. The report identified seven (7) key challenges: (1) poor infrastructure and institutional capacity, (2) fragmentation and policy incoherence, (3) limited government funding for the TVET sector, (4) limited and inequitable access to TVET, (5) absence of a quality development framework, (6) low relevance and cooperation with labour market, and (7) lack of evidence base (data and statistics). The UNESCO/GIZ 2015 report provided several recommendations including but not limited to (1) improving the coordination and governance of the TVET system, (2) ensuring an effective and sustainable funding system, (3) moving towards a more demand-driven approach: linking to growing sectors and rural development, and more. However, internal conflict re-erupted in 2016, and the population has significantly changed since the report’s publication. There is an estimated four (4) million displaced individuals and refugees in South Sudan due to the conflict, which drastically changes policy recommendations and targets.[5] A formal assessment has not been carried out by any stakeholder, but UNESCO Juba’s estimates indicate that there may be over 30 actors from the government, civil society, UN, private sector and donors involved in the TVET sector, all of which are currently conducting and implementing separate projects/activities in silos in policies, curriculum, teacher training, TVET centre construction, etc.

Given the fragmentation, there is a great need to have a rapid assessment to take stock of what has been done in the past, current and future activities of all actors is needed to streamline and formulate the best strategies and actions. The purpose of the rapid assessment is to utilize the UNESCO/GIZ 2015 report as a reference document to draft a report reflecting the current context, while specifically identifying all the actors within TVET and their past, current and potential activities in the sector including but not limited to policies, legislation, management and service delivery in curriculum, quality/standards, qualification frameworks, financing, teacher training, TVET centre construction, relations with other stakeholders, etc.

The consultant assigned for this assignment will be expected to take note of this context, work with all relevant stakeholders (including those in a newly established TVET working group comprised of government ministries, bilateral agencies, donors, UN agencies, civil society, and more.) and provide recommendations on how to address the fragmentation within the TVET by providing concrete next steps. UNESCO will use the findings of the rapid assessment to leverage with all stakeholders the importance of addressing the challenges, mobilize resources, develop subsequent strategies and interventions based on the assessment’s findings and build capacities of various stakeholders (including the government).

Objectives of the TVET Rapid Assessment

The objective of the rapid assessment of the TVET sector in South Sudan is to is to utilize the UNESCO/GIZ 2015 report as a reference document to provide an updated detailed account of all the involved actors in TVET and their past, current and potential activities. This includes an analysis of policies, legislation, management and service delivery of all TVET actors in curriculum, quality/standards, qualification frameworks, financing, teacher training, TVET centre construction, relations with other stakeholders, etc. since 2015. The main focus of the rapid assessment will and must be centered on a mapping of the past, current and potential activities of actors in the TVET sector. This can include but not limited to what has been mentioned above: activities in curriculum/instruction, teacher training, TVET centre construction, etc. The assessment will ultimately be used as a guideline by the TVET working group to leverage with all stakeholders the importance of addressing the challenges, mobilize resources, develop subsequent strategies and interventions based on the assessment’s findings and build capacities of various stakeholders (including the government).

Activities and Deliverables

Activities

· Produce a detailed rapid assessment of the TVET sector in South Sudan based on the below thematic areas with a main focus on the mapping of activities of TVET actors. Additional areas may be added/removed based on any findings during the development of the assessment by UNESCO.

· Work with the relevant staff at UNESCO, members of the TVET working group and all other relevant stakeholders. Such members of the TVET working group include but not limited to government officials from the 13 line ministries, UK’s DFID, EU, USAID, UNICEF, UNWOMEN, UNDP, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), World Vision, Plan International and various national civil society organizations.

· Conduct missions to gather inputs/information from local parties [pending security clearance]

· Present findings to relevant stakeholders and the general public

· Other relevant activities as prescribed by UNESCO

The consultant will report to the Education Project Officer at UNESCO’s Office in Juba under the direction of the UNESCO Representative to South Sudan.

Deliverables

(1) Revised methodology for the rapid assessment based on the below key thematic areas and as agreed by UNESCO

(2) Draft of rapid assessment and presentation of initial findings to UNESCO and the TVET working group

(3) Final draft of rapid assessment and presentation to the TVET working group and wider public

(4) Mission reports for missions conducted in the field to collect information on the local context (contingent on security approval to undertake said missions)

A separate labor market assessment will be conducted separate from this consultancy; thus, the consultant is expected not to focus on labor market dynamics within this assessment. However, brief mentioning of labor market linkages may be considered.

Key Thematic Areas for Investigation/Research/Analysis and Studies Identified

*Note: all areas should be contextualized by state/area (location) and by groups (e.g., girls, disadvantaged groups, etc.) where relevant and appropriate. All proposed analysis and recommendations should account for any and all possible bottlenecks of any gender in the access and delivery of TVET as well as the learner’s success in obtaining gainful employment after exiting the TVET system. For example, analysis should be provided on why females have higher inactive/unemployment rates and what and how TVET can respond to such challenges.

Thematic Area

Core Content

Background

(1-2 pages)

· Internal conflict

· Economic collapse

· Displacement – 4 million IDPs and refugees

· Demand for TVET for peace-building and socio-economically

Policy, Legislation, Sector Management and Financing

(2-3 pages)

· Current policies, legislation and regulations

· Governance arrangements: mandates, management and administration (under different ministries)

· Public investment in TVET sector

· Private investment in TVET sector

· Donor aid in TVET Sector

· Standards, qualification frameworks and accreditations

· Information management/exchange

· Quality assurance framework

Account of the TVET System – Mapping of Activities of TVET Actors

(8-12 pages)

· Detailed account of all past, current and potential activities of all actors within public and private TVET sector (NGOs, UN agencies, government and private sector) in curriculum, teacher training, skills development, qualification frameworks, TVET centre establishment/construction, financing, etc. at the secondary and tertiary levels in formal and non-formal settings

o Current state of government activities (e.g., non-payment of government workers since June 2017)

· Analytical grid of settings (duration, school/work-based breakdown, etc.), sectors and trades available, certifications delivered, the participation rates, gender disparities, etc.

· Current enrolments, forecasts, demographic trends (where possible)

o Broad profiling of the current beneficiaries including their age, aspirations, previous (foundation, vocational) skills and any work experience, rural/urban origin breakdown, disabilities, etc. to help identify those accessing and not accessing TVET

· Challenges to access and quality of TVET and identification of any disadvantaged groups

· Pathways for TVET within secondary/tertiary levels for both formal/non-formal routes

· Delivery modalities and programmes including alternative learning programmes and work-based training

· Data on graduate employment

· Teacher/instructors (numbers and qualifications)

· Facilities and equipment

· Quality assurance arrangement and accreditation

· Public/private partnerships

Priority Option Areas

(3-4 pages)

· Development of a single national TVET policy and national TVET authority

· Recommendations to strengthen governance arrangements and coordination and communication within the TVET system that includes the involvement of all national/international stakeholders

· Curriculum and competency-based standards at the secondary/tertiary levels in formal and non-formal settings

· Strategic planning capacity for TVET development

· Capacity building for development of competency-based standards, qualification frameworks, quality assurance systems

· Human resource management and development within TVET, including salary structures and incentive mechanisms, recruitment and promotion, training and other capacity development, etc.

· Appropriate midstream and downstream intervention areas

· Capacity development needs for teachers, instructors, ministry officials

· Options for system expansion, resource implications

· Upgrading/construction needs for facilities and training equipment

· Targeted support for disadvantaged students (e.g., scholarships and/or loans)

· Options for replicating successful approaches to provided skills training to upgrade skills and knowledge of current workers, youth and adults

· Consideration of alternative learning programmes, mobile TVET solutions and other non-formal routes

· Entrepreneurial and multi-skilled approaches in the delivery of programmes and management of TVET institutions

· Enhancing public-private partnerships

· Information management (within the TVET system and labour market-related)

Timeframe

6 February – 30 March 2018: 35 working days

o 25 working days in country — 20 days of in-country research, consultations; three (3) days to prepare and present initial findings of assessment; and two (2) days to prepare and present final version of the assessment

o Ten (10) working days out of country – research and final drafting of assessment

Deliverables and Deadlines

Revised Methodology: 9 February 2018

Draft – Rapid Assessment: 6 March 2018

Presentation on Draft – Rapid Assessment: 9 March 2018

Final Draft – Rapid Assessment: 23 March 2018

Presentation – Published Rapid Assessment: 30 March 2018

Mission Reports: TBD

Requirements

· Advance degree in education, economics, social sciences or any related field (doctorate degree preferred)

· Senior level experience (10+ years) in education sector analysis, research and reform specifically in technical and vocational education and training (TVET) including but not limited to curriculum development, labour market analysis, skills development, qualification frameworks, financing, pathways for TVET, etc.

· Extensive experience in education in emergencies and understanding of conflict settings

· Native or near-native level of oral and written English

· Capacity to work in multicultural teams, engage in group work and produce high quality work within tight deadlines

· Ability to make high-quality presentations to an audience attended by high-level stakeholders

[1] World Bank (2017). South Sudan Economic Update: Taming the Tides of High Inflation. Available at http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/806291508505062484/pdf/120563-WP-SSEUUpdatefinal-PUBLIC.pdf

[2] Understanding Children’s Work – ILO, UNICEF and World Bank (2011). Labour Market in South Sudan. Available at http://www.ucw-project.org/attachment/Labour_market_in_South_Sudan_childlabour_youthemployment20120131_173344.pdf

[3] Abid.

[4] UN-OCHA (2017). South Sudan. Available at http://www.unocha.org/south-sudan and UNHCR (2017). South Sudan Situation. Available at http://data.unhcr.org/SouthSudan/regional.php

[5] Abid.

How to apply:

Interested applicants are invited to submit the following (in English) and referencing “Consultant – Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Rapid Assessment” by 30 January 2018.

· An up-to-date curriculum vitae

· A statement indicating how their qualifications and experience make them suitable for the assignment

· An indication of the methodology he/she would adopt to carry out the assignment

By e-mail:

E-mail to: j.recruitment@unesco.org

By post to:

UNESCO Juba Office
P. O. Box 649
Juba
Republic of South Sudan

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