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Federal Center of Theoretical and Applied Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences
Presented in this article is a review, which evaluates the current state of Russia’s secondary professional education system (SPE), and the degree to which it is prepared to train specialists who would be in demand by an innovative economy. Unlike the higher professional education system, during the last decade SPE has not only ceased to be a government priority, but has also “suffered” to a certain degree due to increased attention on behalf of the federal government towards universities, which have attained special statuses – such as “federal”, “research”, “supporting”. Limited financial resources have been redistributed for the benefit of higher educational facilities, this leading to a decrease in funding for training personnel within SPE, while also harming the resource base. This took a serious toll on those technical colleges which trained specialists in new, promising professions. Given such a situation, communicating with employers becomes one of the key factors. However, the cooperation between SPE facilities and enterprises has been experiencing crisis due to the general decline of a number of manufacturing plants during the post-Soviet period. The study is based on the analysis of official statistical data, materials from sociological surveys, as well as expert opinions. This article consistently analyzes the current state of the SPE system, evaluates the training level of teachers, students’ motivation for receiving secondary education, as well as the most popular professions. Special attention is devoted to corporate training acting as the equivalent of SPE, in the form of additional professional training. The article is concluded by examining possible directions for the development of the SPE system, in order to facilitate its adaptation to the demands of an innovative economy. Three possible directions are offered, which might help increase the quality of education within the SPE system, given the current conditions of financial limitations and issues associated with the quality of human resources. This includes cooperation with higher educational facilities, transferring a certain part of educational programs to the premises of employers, and conducting personnel training and advanced training by means of participation in independent programs such as WorldSkills and other such initiatives.
secondary vocational education, innovative economy, technologies, training, skills, Russia
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