Event report Dual Learning: The Swiss Experience
On 18 September, a workshop on the Swiss system of dual learning was organised at the headquarters of Voka. The event was introduced by Mrs. Hilde Crevits, Flemish Minister of Education, and by Dr. Mauro Dell’Ambrogio, Swiss State Secretary for Education, Research and Innovation.
Additional inputs were provided by Prof. Frank Baert, President of the Flemish partnership for dual learning, and Mr. Emanuel Wüthrich, Senior Advisor, Swiss Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training. Representatives of Swiss firms and schools as well as winners of the last WorldSkills Competitions shared their personal experiences in two parallel panel sessions and provided further insight into the Swiss dual VET system.
- Two-thirds of all young people enrol in dual education. There are around 230 professions to choose from. Dual learning forms the basis for lifelong learning and can lead to the most prestigious and best paying jobs in Switzerland.
- The permeability is high. Learners may pursue more advanced education, switch from vocational pathways to general pathways and later change the course of their working lives with relative ease. There are dual education options at all levels, even at university.
- The dual system is company-driven. The direct link with the labour market is one of the main reasons why Switzerland has one of the lowest youth unemployment rates in Europe.
- Apprenticeships are financially beneficial for companies. The productive output of learners exceeds the gross costs of their training.
- Dual learning is one of the most appropriate means of achieving successful integration and it facilitates the integration of migrants on the labour market.
- The high quality is ensured by a strong partnership and distribution of training content across different learning locations: the schools, the companies and in some cases sectoral training centres.
- Federal examinations guarantee the same quality and competences across all learners.