World TVET Database - Country Profiles

As of April 2017, a number of updated Country TVET Profiles will be available in a new and more user friendly format with some new features (for example, statistical information).

Czech Republic

TVET Country Profile
1. TVET mission
2. System
3. Governance and financing
4. TVET teachers and trainers
5. Qualifications
6. Projects
7. Statistical information
8. Links
9. References
Czech Republic
published: 2013-11-28

1. TVET mission, legislation and national policy or strategy

TVET mission

The National Curricula (also called Framework Educational Programmes - FEPs) define the TVET mission as being to prepare students for successful, meaningful and responsible civic and working life in a changing world.

TVET strategy

In 2008, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MŠMT) adopted a National Action Plan to support vocational education and training. Its implementation should lead to an expansion and strengthening of mechanisms that increase participation in TVET. The plan comprises above all the following strategic steps:

  • enhancing transferability within the TVET system;
  • improving career counselling and the provision of information to the public; and
  • facilitating cooperation between schools and employers in terms of content, funding and implementation of TVET, including providing incentives for this cooperation.
In 2013, the Government adopted in accordance with the National Action Plan a paper called New measures fostering vocational education and training that defines the main steps related to the organisation, administration and legislation planned in the next few years to enhance participation in TVET and its quality.

TVET legislation

  • The Education Act 561/2004 Coll., on pre-school, basic, secondary, higher professional and other education (Zákon č. 561/2004 Sb. o předškolním, základním, středním, vyšším odborném a jiném vzdělávání (Školský zákon) regulates pre-school, basic, secondary, tertiary professional and other education at schools and school facilities, lays down conditions under which education and training are executed, defines the rights and duties of natural and legal persons involved in education, and specifies the scope of competencies of the bodies executing state administration and self-government in the system of education. The Act formulates the foundations and goals of TVET, introduces a new approach to TVET curricula and assigns specific powers and responsibilities to local government.
  • The Act no. 347/1997 Coll. on the establishment of higher-level administrative units (regions) (Zákon č. 347/1997 Sb. o vytvoření vyšších územních samosprávných celků) guides the administrative framework of TVET and has delegated some key responsibilities in the TVET area to regional bodies.
  • The Act on pedagogical staff no. 563/2004 Coll. (Zákon o pedagogických pracovnících a o změně některých zákonů, č. 563/2004 Sb.) stipulates a definition of the position of pedagogical staff (including TVET teachers), regulates the prerequisites for the performance of duties by pedagogical staff, their further education, and the career scheme. The Act also defines that pedagogical staff have the duty of further learning for renewing, improving, and supplementing their qualifications.
  • The Act no. 179/2006 on verification and recognition of further education results (validation of non-formal and informal learning) (Zákon o ověřování a uznávání výsledků dalšího vzdělávání) specifies the method of assessing competences, the rules governing the authorisation of certification bodies and the responsibilities of individual agencies involved. It established the National Register of Vocational Qualifications (NSK) containing complete and partial qualifications and their assessment standards.
Sources:

  • CEDEFOP Refernet (2012). Czech Republic VET in Europe – Country report. Thessaloniki: European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training.
  • EQAVET (2013). Description of the Vet System in Czech Republic. Dublin: European Quality Assurance in Vocational Education and Training. Accessed: 17 October 2013.
  • EURYDICE (2008). Organisation of the Education System in the Czech Republic 2008/09. Brussels: EURYDICE.
  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Czech Republic. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.


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    2. TVET formal, non-formal and informal systems

Scheme compiled by UNESCO-UNEVOC from CEDEFOP Refernet (2012). Czech Republic VET in Europe – Country report. Thessaloniki: European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training.

Formal TVET system

TVET Programmes at lower secondary level (ISCED2C):

These programmes are designed primarily for students with special needs and disadvantaged students who face difficulties in studying. The programmes last one to two years and are provided by secondary vocational schools (střední odborná učiliště– SOU) or by practical schools (praktické školy). The practical school specialises in disadvantaged pupils and specific teaching methods are used. These schools do not provide for vocational qualifications, but develop manual skills and working habits and prepare students for performance of simple auxiliary tasks in production or services.

TVET Programmes at Upper Secondary Level:

In terms of student number, vocational education accounts for almost three quarters of secondary education. Vocational and technical programmes at upper secondary level are provided by different types of secondary schools. Often these different types of schools are integrated into one legal entity (an integrated school) providing more diverse study opportunities under one roof.

The major types of secondary schools are:

  • Secondary Vocational Schools (střední odborné učiliště– SOU) offer usually three-year programmes (ISCED3C ) which prepare students for direct entry into the labour market. Part of these programmes is vocational training, which takes place in training facilities or school workshops/ laboratories or, in the second and third year, usually in a real workplace environment. These programmes leading to a qualification with an apprenticeship certificate are more practically oriented and have a smaller general education component (approximately 34%). Education in these programmes is concluded with a final examination in which students demonstrate that they are prepared for relevant work activities. Students may also continue their study through a two-year follow-up course (ISCED4A) and pass the maturita examination, which allows access to higher education.
  • Secondary Technical Schools (střední odborná škola– SOŠ) offer four-year professionally oriented technical programmes (ISCED3A) completed by a maturita exam. These programmes include a general education component, forming roughly 50% of the course content. Graduates may continue in tertiary education or enter the labour market. The programmes include work placements in companies and other institutions. SOŠ offer also Lyceum programmes in which the proportion of general education accounts for approximately 70% of the curriculum. These programmes are established to respond to the increasing demand for general education.
TVET Programmes at Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Level (follow-up courses):

A follow-up course lasts two years (ISCED4A). Students who complete the three-year programme at SOU may enrol in a follow-up course either immediately or after a period of work experience. Follow-up courses in a specific field can be organised by secondary schools which provide the maturita exam in the same field. Students complete the follow-up course by passing the maturita exam..

Conservatoires

Conservatories provide professional artistic education in the fields of music, dance, or drama. This education takes place in two types of programmes, six year (after the completion of lower secondary education) or eight year in the dance conservatory (which begins after the fifth year of primary school). Graduates of both types of programmes obtain higher professional qualifications at ISCED level 5B, which permit further study only in artistic programmes at tertiary institutions, or qualifications at level 3A, which permit entry to any tertiary programme. The last two years of conservatory are considered to be tertiary education. The first four years of the eight year programme, by contrast, are considered lower secondary education and form part of the nine years of compulsory education. Study at a conservatory is reserved for highly talented students in music or dance.

Programmes at professional schools (vyšší odborné školy – VOŠ) Tertiary Level:

Tertiary professional schools began to appear in 1995/1996 to provide non-university tertiary-level education. VOŠ offer programmes lasting three to three and half years (ISCED5B). Some of these programmes have recently acquired the status of higher education of a non-university type and most of them were originally established at secondary technical schools (SOŠ). Students must complete upper secondary education and pass the maturita examination to be admitted to VOŠ programmes. Practical training in a specific field constitutes a significant component of VOŠ programmes. The training may last up to one year at a work placement during which students work on a paper or project. VOŠ and the relevant company or institutions jointly evaluate these papers or projects. VOŠ programmes are completed by the absolutorium, a vocational examination consisting of an examination in the theory of vocational subjects, a foreign language, a graduate thesis and its defence. Graduates from VOŠ may continue their studies at higher education institutions on the same conditions that apply to secondary school graduates who hold a maturita certificate.

Shortened programmes at secondary TVET schools:

The full-time programme lasts 1-2 years and the respective part-time alternatives may be longer by one year at the most. These programmes are designed for adults who have already completed secondary education and intend to acquire a qualification in a different field, or they have secondary general education and intend to get a vocational qualification.

Non-formal and informal TVET systems

There is training provided by schools and specialised institutions within the school system. Within the regular school system, non-formal courses are also provided that do not lead to the qualification level. The graduates get the certificate of completion of the course. For continuing TVET (CVET) provided outside the school system, no regular structure or educational pathways are given. The provision is generally based on the free market or special programmes directed by individual departments (e.g. retraining within public employment services or sectoral statutory trainings) where a certificate is awarded upon completion, but no qualification level is achieved. There are however several exceptions: institutions that wish to have the right to award certificates of CVET with nationwide validity may obtain accreditation from the relevant ministerial body, and institutions providing language education may obtain accreditation from the MŠMT.

The validation of non-formal and informal learning outcomes is enabled by the Act 179/2006. The Register of Vocational Qualifications (NSK) includes qualifications standards which are described in terms of learning outcomes. The demonstration of these outcomes in examinations is a requirement for awarding vocational qualifications.

Sources:

  • CEDEFOP Refernet (2012). Czech Republic VET in Europe – Country report. Thessaloniki: European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training.
  • Education and Culture DG Lifelong Learning Programme and The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (2011). National Referencing Report of the Czech Republic. Prague: the National Institute for Education, Education Counselling Centre and Centre for Continuing Education of Teachers.


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    3. Governance and financing

Governance

The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MŠMT) is the main body responsible for TVET at the national level. The MŠMT is responsible for: the development of national education strategy and priorities; the development of curriculum policy; assuring the quality of TVET on the basis of the objectives and content of education; and the coordination for public administration and funding.

The National Institute for Education (NÚV) is a functional body under the MŠMT and receives its funding from the state budget. The NÚV is a coordinating, consultative, expert and research institution in TVET including tertiary professional education. It develops and revises the framework for TVET programmes in all fields of secondary TVET; offers advisory services through its Career Guidance Centre and focuses on research, methodology and dissemination of information related to career counselling, NÚV supports the teaching of subjects dealing with labour market issues; and contributes to the development of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) and the National Register of Vocational Qualifications (NSK).

The Regional Assembly (zastupitelstvo kraje,) is responsible for establishing and closing down TVET schools and school facilities. The assembly is obliged to form a commission for education and employment, which takes decisions on the number and structure of the schools and their educational provision; the quality of schools; and the funding of education in the regions. The regional council (rada kraje) is elected by the assembly and holds executive powers, forming expert commissions (e.g. for young people and education) in various areas to perform advisory functions.

The Regional Authority (krajský úřad) is a regional body of the state administration. One of its departments deals with education. The Authority is responsible for the execution of state administration in the region, and its main tasks in the area of education include: developing a regional long-term plan for the development of the education system; and preparing a report about the status of education in the region. The Regional Authority allocates resources from the state budget to schools to cover pedagogical staffs’ wages and direct educational costs, and monitors the expenditures.

School directors hold significant powers and their responsibilities include: preparing and implementing school curricula based on the approved national curricula; monitoring the quality of pedagogical work and human resources policy; educational management and efficient management and use of the financial resources.

In the Czech Republic, social partners can influence both the conception of objectives and content of vocational education at national and regional levels particularly through the co-operation on the preparation of curricular documents. Their representatives also participate in the final exam/maturita committees (for ISCED 3C and ISCED 3A programmes). As enhancing the role of employers is one of current national priorities, various other forms of their participation in VET are being discussed and piloted.

Financing

TVET in public schools is provided for free, while private schools and public VOŠ may collect fees. The maximum fees for public VOŠ are set by legislation and differ for individual study fields.

The responsibility for funding TVET secondary schools (SOU and SOŠ) and tertiary professional schools (VOŠ) is shared between the MŠMT and founders. The resources from the MŠMT budget are designated for covering the direct non-investment expenditures and flows to the schools through the regional budget, while the resources from the founders are allocated for operational and capital costs. The MŠMT budget also provides financial resources to private schools.

The funding from public budgets (for direct and operational costs only) is based on per-capita normative rates set for the given school type and the study field. Schools may also receive resources from the MŠMT budget for development programmes. Private resources constitute a very limited source of the funding of TVET public secondary schools. The following chart demonstrates financial flows in secondary TVET:

Chart extracted from CEDEFOP Publication: Czech Republic VET in Europe – Country Report 2012.

Sources:

  • CEDEFOP Refernet (2012). Czech Republic VET in Europe – Country report. Thessaloniki: European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training.
  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Czech Republic. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.


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    4. TVET teachers and trainers

Typically teaching programmes last five years and lead to a master's degree (three-year bachelor's and two-year master's degree). While the basic school teachers study the programme at teacher training faculties, teachers of general subjects attend specialised master's degree programmes (the teacher´s specialty is part of the programme) at faculties of philosophy, mathematics and physics, natural science or physical education and sports. Teachers of specialised subjects at secondary technical schools (SOŠ) are trained at all other types of higher education establishments. A teaching qualification in a specialised subject can be obtained while studying a major specialist subject or after having completed university programmes in the form of supplementary teaching courses usually lasting four semesters.

The Act on Pedagogical Staff stipulates that the head teachers organise further education of teachers in accordance with a plan of further education. Pedagogical staff have a duty of further education in order to renew, improve and supplement their qualifications.

The MŠMT seeks to strengthen teachers’ competencies; for instance, in 1996, the MŠMT established a new system of continuing education for teachers at basic, upper secondary and higher professional schools, launching six teacher training centres. In 2004 the MŠMT established a committee to look at the reform of initial teacher training. The reform has addressed the following aspects:

  • standards for teacher training;
  • proportions of individual components of the study programmes;
  • the content of the study programmes and the obligatory content; and
  • the required qualification of graduates.
The National Institute for Further Education (NIDV) was established in 2004 (transformed from the former pedagogical centres), consisting of thirteen regional locations to coordinate and organise in-service teacher training and school management. Three types of in-service training are provided:

  • courses aimed at gaining required qualifications;
  • courses aimed at meeting further qualification requirements; and
  • courses aimed at perfecting professional qualifications.
Sources:

  • EURYDICE (2008). Organisation of the Education System in the Czech Republic 2008/09. Brussels: EURYDICE.
  • National Institute for Further Education (2006). About Us. Prague: National Institute for Further Education. Accessed: 22 October 2013.
  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Czech Republic. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.


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    5. Qualifications and qualifications frameworks

Secondary vocational education

Programme Duration Qualification
Secondary vocational schools (SOU) 3 years Apprenticeship certificate (výuční list) (ISCED3C)
Secondary technical schools (SOŠ) 4 years Maturita certificate (ISCED3A)
Conservatories and at professional schools (VOŠ) Certificate of absolutorium; diploma (ISCED 5B); diplomovaný specialist (DiS)

National Qualifications Framework (NQF)

The Czech Republic has yet to decide whether to develop a comprehensive NQF. However, partial/sectoral frameworks for vocational qualifications and for tertiary education qualifications have been developed and are now operational. The proposed descriptors for primary and secondary education may also be seen as pointing in this direction; the question now being discussed is whether an overarching framework can help to coordinate and bridge these separate developments. Stakeholders are supportive of a comprehensive NQF development as a tool for communication, mutual cooperation and improving the quality of education and training in general. The promotion and development of a comprehensive NQF is also in line and is coordinated with the development of the emerging educational policy strategy of the Czech Republic for 2020.

Quality assurance

The MŠMT prepares an annual report on the state of the educational system and every four years a long-term plan on the development of the educational system. In addition, the MŠMT publishes strategic reports which formulate the basic principles and procedures in the area of quality assurance. For example, the main strategic reports in this regard are the Czech National Educational Development Plan and the Strategy for Lifelong Learning in the Czech Republic.

Key quality assurance mechanisms continue under the competence of the state including: setting of strategic goals and delimiting the competences of actors in the educational process. Schools are assigned with responsibility of setting and achieving their own goals based on the national curriculum.

The Czech School Inspectorate (CSI) is a state agency responsible for external evaluation. It represents the Czech Republic in relevant EU forums. The CSI publishes its evaluation criteria to educational institutions, which are checked annually. In addition, there are thematic investigations aimed at particular types of schools or particular issues. The CSI publishes summary comments on the state of the educational system in its annual report.

The CSI and the National Institute for Education (NÚV) represent the Czech Republic in the European Quality Assurance in Vocational Education and Training (EQAVET). The CSI is the national reference point for the implementation of the European Framework for Quality Assurance in Vocational Education (EQAVET CZ).

Sources:

  • EQAVET (2013). Description of the Vet System in Czech Republic. Dublin: European Quality Assurance in Vocational Education and Training. Accessed: 17 October 2013.
  • Nuffic (2012). Country Module – Czech Republic. The Hague: Netherlands Organisation for International Cooperation in Higher Education.


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    6. Current and ongoing reforms, projects, and challenges

Current reforms and major projects

TVET has always been a fundamental part of the Czech education system. TVET has developed intensively over the last decades. Key features include:

  • diversifying TVET educational pathways with many choices including higher education;
  • introducing a new qualification system and a national standardised exam in apprenticeship programmes;
  • launching a major new adult education initiative recognising learning outcomes of non-formal and informal TVET; and
  • developing new tools to improve career guidance.
The National Curricula for TVET

The vocational education system of the Czech Republic has been undergoing an extensive curricular reform, aimed at pupils in vocational training to acquire knowledge, skills and attitudes they need for a full life in the 21st century. The National Programme of Education Development in the Czech Republic –so called White Book (2001) and the Education Act 561/2004 Coll., on pre-school, basic, secondary, higher professional and other education introduced the new system of educational programmes. The curriculum is newly created on two levels – on the national level and on the level of individual schools – and is focused mainly on learning outcomes and key competences. The National curricula (so-called Framework educational programmes FEP-rámcové vzdělávací programy RVP) contain the minimum requirements for education stipulated by the State and are created for each individual field of education (currently 281 fields). On the level of individual schools, the School-based curricula (so-called School educational programmes SEP-školní vzdělávací programy - ŠVP) are created. The national curricula for vocational schools were developed continuously during the period 2007-2012 by the National Institute of Technical and Vocational Education (Národní ústav odborného vzdělávání – NÚOV – renamed to NÚV in 2011) and subsequently approved by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MŠMT). In line with the approved national curricula, the schools need to develop their own school curricula within 2 years. The objective of this two-level development of curricula is to:

  • allow for further flexibility in shaping graduate profiles in line with regional needs;
  • develop programmes in fields required by the labour market; and
  • fulfil the interests and capacities of students.
National System of Occupations (NSP)

In close cooperation with the MŠMT, the Ministry of Labour and Social Work (MPSV) is developing a National System of Occupations (NSP), which is a list of all types of job in the Czech Republic. The NSP records the requirements for individual professions in the labour market. NSP aims to create a publicly available database of professions accurately reflecting the situation in the labour market. The NSP is becoming an important source of information in the areas of human resources and TVET at all levels. It significantly strengthens the role of employers in TVET and provides a foundation for mobility.

Challenges

The Czech Republic has committed to link its national qualifications systems to the European Qualification Framework (EQF). Although the NQF is still under development, the existing classification system for qualifications, the Classification of Educational Qualification Types (KKOV), and the National Register of Vocational Qualifications (NSK) permit a referencing to the EQF. The result of the referencing process is considered as a starting point for further discussion on the need for a comprehensive NQF which would use common descriptors to describe the levels for all qualifications awarded.

Sources:

  • CEDEFOP (2013). Spotlight on VET Czech Republic. Thessaloniki: European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training.
  • Education and Culture DG Lifelong Learning Programme and The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (2011). National Referencing Report of the Czech Republic. Prague: the National Institute for Education, Education Counselling Centre and Centre for Continuing Education of Teachers.
  • OECD (2010). Vocational Education and Training in the Czech Republic Strengths, Challenges and Recommendations. Paris: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.


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    7. Statistical information(*)

Population (Million)


2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

10.23
10.28
10.34
10.41
10.49
10.55
Average yearly population growth rate 2005 - 2010

+0.63 %


For comparison:
Global average yearly population growth rate 2005-2010: 1.17%
5.25 4.99
female male  
5.26 5.01
female male  
5.29 5.05
female male  
5.31 5.10
female male  
5.34 5.14
female male  
5.37 5.18
female male  

51.27 %

51.21 %

51.13 %

51.04 %

50.95 %

50.89 %





GDP per capita (currency: US$)


2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012


12 706

14 446

17 467

21 627

18 806

18 867

20 580

18 608




Employment (Million)


total female male
Population

10.55

5.37 5.18
.
Labour Force
50.1%
Labour Force Rate

50.1%

42.6%

57.9%

Labour Force

5.29

2.29 (43.3%) 3.00 (56.7%)
Unemployment Rate

6.7%

7.7%

5.8%

.
Unemployment
6.7%
Unemployed

0.35

0.18 (50.3%) 0.18 (49.7%)


Youth Employment (Million)


total youth total female male
Population 10.55 1.33 (12.6%) 0.65 (48.5%) 0.69 (51.5%)
.
Labour Force Rate

31.8%

26.2%

37.3%

Labour Force 5.29 0.42 (8%) 0.17 (39.9%) 0.26 (60.4%)
Unemployment Rate

16.7%

16.6%

16.4%

.
Unemployed 0.35 0.07 (20.2%) 0.03 (39.4%) 0.04 (59.2%)
Unemployed
youth : total

20.2%

.



Participation in TVET (% of upper secondary)


2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

79%

79%

75%

74%

73%

73%

72%

Average yearly population growth rate 2005 - 2011

-1.48 %

74 84
female male  
74 84
female male  
70 80
female male  
68 79
female male  
67 79
female male  
66 79
female male  
66 78
female male  
(ratio 46.8 %) (ratio 46.8 %) (ratio 46.7 %) (ratio 46.3 %) (ratio 45.9 %) (ratio 45.5 %) (ratio 45.8 %)





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8. Links to UNEVOC centres and TVET institutions

UNEVOC Centres

TVET Institutions



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9. References, bibliography, abbreviations

References

Further reading

Abbreviations

  • CSI - Czech School Inspectorate
  • CVET - Continuing TVET
  • EQF - European Qualifications Framework
  • FEPs - Framework Educational Programmes
  • KKOV - Classification of Educational Qualification Types
  • MŠMT - Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports
  • NIDV - National Institute for Further Education
  • NSK - National Register of Vocational Qualifications
  • NSP - National System of Occupations
  • NÚV - National Institute for Education
  • SOŠ - Secondary Technical Schools
  • SOU - Secondary Vocational Schools
  • VOŠ - Tertiary professional schools




    Published by: UNESCO-UNEVOC
    Publication Date: 2013-11-28
    Validated by: Ladislav Koubek Director;
    Department of International Cooperation and Social Partnership;
    National Institute for Education, Education Counseling Centre and Centre for Continuing Education of Teachers



page date 2017-02-22

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