Spain hires Germany as ‘Sherpa’

LAST UPDATED: 27 Jul, 2012 @ 12:23
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Spain hires Germany as ‘Sherpa’

SPAIN’S ‘lost generation’ of unemployed youth are set to get a helping hand from Germany.

The European neighbour has agreed to help Spain launch German-style apprenticeships for its jobless youth to give more Spaniards on-the-job training with German firms.

Education Minister Jose Ignacio Wert has signed an agreement with his German counterpart Annette Schavan and insists Spain must learn from Germany.

“We want Germany to be our Sherpa on this job training adventure,” he said.

“We have 1.5 million university students and only 270,000 trade school students.”

He added that students were getting far more theory than practical experience, and that many lacked foreign language skills.

In contrast Germany’s ‘dual’ education system, combining practical apprenticeships with classroom studies, is widely admired in Europe.

Now Schavan has said Germany will expand educational exchanges with Spain – where youth unemployment is at 52 per cent – and help Madrid develop its own dual system.

German firms doing business in Spain will be encouraged to hire and train more young Spaniards.

“There are great jobs and apprenticeships here,” said Schaven.

“But there must also be another approach: in Spain and in countries where so far there is no vocational training, it must be introduced and companies must be convinced to introduce it,” she added.

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