Terms of Reference for a senior International Short Term Expert (ISTE) in the Agriculture Sector

Enhancing Youth Employability in the Gaza Strip Project

Terms of Reference for a senior International Short Term Expert (ISTE) in the Agriculture Sector

1. Project background
Islamic Relief Palestine (IRPAL), in partnership with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), is responsible for the implementation of a new TVET/LM project entitled Enhancing Youth Employability in the Gaza Strip. The overall goal of the Enhancing Youth Employability (EYE) project is to improve youth employability in the Gaza Strip while, at the same time, improving the overall TVET system in the Gaza Strip.
Project aim
To enhance the employability of young men and women in the Gaza Strip through an improved and unified TVET system with public TVET centres providing trainees with labour market relevant skills and employment services
Project objectives
1. Palestinian national TVET/LM strategies are adopted by relevant ministries in Gaza
2. The capacity of public TVET institutions in Gaza is revitalised in terms of improved working processes and human resources are enabled to deliver employment orientated training in selected priority occupations
3. Vocational training in selected occupations is delivered to national standards and successful trainees are employed
The EYE project, which will be implemented during the period January 2013 to December 2015, also aims to improve opportunities for young Gazan women to access quality TVET provision and the long-term capacity of Islamic Relief to design and implement high quality TVET/LM initiatives in the Gaza Strip in the future.
The project has been developed within the overall framework of the National Palestinian TVET Strategy (revised 2010) and will support the implementation of key elements of this strategy in the Gaza Strip.
The EYE project will achieve its objectives through a combination of TVET institution building, human resource development, curricula development and labour market initiatives.
More specifically, the project will select three existing TVET institutions in the public sector and upgrade them, in terms of building infrastructure, equipment, curricula and staff capacity building, into Centres of Competence for three specific economic sectors. The selected sectors are Construction, Agriculture and Digital Media (ICT).
These ToR relate specifically to the Agriculture Sector.

2. Mission focus
The main purpose of this mission is the development of a detailed upgrading and maintenance plan for the Ministry of Education and Higher Education’s (MoEHE) vocational training school in the town of Beit Hanoun in the north of the Gaza Strip. This training centre has been selected for upgrading to a Centre of Competence (CoC) for the Agriculture Sector as part of the EYE Project. This CoC will initially focus on the following three priority occupations:
1. Animal production
2. Plant production
3. Food processing
In line with MoEHE rules and regulations, trainees (aged between 15 to 17) will follow a two-year curriculum in one of these three priority occupations at the end of which successful trainees will be certified at European Qualification Framework (EQF) Level 3 as ‘skilled workers’. New competency-based and modular curricula will be developed for each occupation as part of the EYE project.
This mission is an important first step in upgrading the Beit Hanoun TVET centre into a CoC for the Agriculture Sector.

3. Timing and duration
The senior ISTE will carry out one mission of 25 work days in the Gaza Strip between May – June 2013. These 25 work days include two travel days.

4. ISTE duties/activities
The senior ISTE will

  •   Review all relevant project documentation including the recently drafted Palestinian Occupational Classification (POC)
  •   Prepare and agree, with EYE project staff, a mission methodology (to include a specific role for a Local STE who will be available for 35 work days to assist the ISTE to carry out this assignment)
  •   Familiarise him/herself with the current and changing context in the Gaza Strip in relation to the Agriculture Sector and the three priority occupations and relating this to the POC
  •   Conduct meetings/field visits with/to key stakeholders including visits to a other TVET institutions offering training in the Agriculture Sector in the Gaza Strip
  •  Carry out a detailed analysis of the Beit Hanoun TVET centre which is to be upgraded to a CoC for the Agriculture Sector
  •   Prepare a detailed plan for upgrading the Beit Hanoun centre so that it can deliver the three agriculture selected occupations to the highest international standards. Inter alia, this plan must contain
    •   An outline syllabus clearly listing the knowledge, skills and personal behaviours required for each occupation at ‘skilled worker’ level (that is, EQF Level 3)1. This syllabus should be broken into discreet training modules stating training hours for each in line with MoEHE requirements.
    •   A recommended skills/qualification profile for a trainer for each of the three occupations
    •   For each occupation, a detailed description of the required building and refurbishment alterations to be made to the training centre including floor plan/drawings showing required alterations and an estimated cost for the same.
    •   For each occupation, a detailed workshop layout should be produced showing the recommended location of trainee work stations, machinery, tools/equipment etc.
    •   Detailed specifications of equipment required, for each occupation, including cost ($) and recommended source(s) of purchase (where possible, local/regional sources preferred)
    •   Materials specification, including costs and sourcing, required for conducting each occupational course
    •   Annual maintenance plan for equipment/materials relating to each occupation
    •   Recommend progression routes for successful EQF Level 3 trainees who wish to progress in the Gaza Strip (or West Bank) in their chosen occupational field to EQF level 4; progression routes should indicate courses, training providers and qualifications
    •   Other relevant information which the ISTE considers should be included
  •  Present draft plan to Curricula and Centres of Competence Working Group and/or the Project Advisory Committee (PAC) and to the EYE Project Team and amend if necessary
  •  Prepare and submit end-of-mission report to include recommendations for further development of this activity
  •  Advise the TVET Project Manager as considered appropriate

6. Qualifications and skills

  •   Initial or higher degree in education, vocational/technical education or related discipline
  •  At least 15 years technical experience in the Agriculture Sector
  •  At least 10 years relevant work experience in the field of demand-driven TVET reform including experience working with the EQF
  •  At least 5 years procurement experience in the Agriculture Sector
  •  Be experienced in designing occupation-specific technical specifications for building/equipment/materials planning related to the three agriculture occupations
  •  Experience in the design of competency-based modular curricula and qualifications for the Agriculture Sector at EQF Level 3 (skilled worker level) and be familiar with EQF Level 4 requirements in this sector
  •  Wide experience with TVET standards and curricula development using a sectoral approach
  •  Have a high level of proficiency/fluency in spoken and written English. Knowledge of Arabic would be an advantage but is not essential.
  •  Be aware of gender and environmental issues
  •  Be computer literate
  •  Have good organisational, communication and interpersonal skills
  •  Previous experience related to TVET development in the Middle East would be an advantage
  •  Be politically aware of issues relating to the occupied Palestinian territories

7. Reporting
The senior ISTE will report to the IRPAL TVET Unit Project Manager, and liaise closely with the Project Coordinator responsible for this activity.

8. Work schedule
By arrangement with the IRPAL TVET Unit Project Manager.

9. Location
The senior ISTE will be based in IRPAL’s TVET Project Unit office in Gaza City and will be required to travel frequently to Beit Hanoun and throughout the Gaza Strip.

10. Contract
IRPAL will be responsible for all contractual matters relating to this assignment and the senior ISTE will be contracted by IRPAL.

11. Contact
ISTEs who are interested in and available for this assignment should immediately e-mail their updated CVs, preferably in EU format, to Dr Ammar Elqidra, IRPAL TVET Unit Project Manager, at a.qidra@irpal.ps