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Secondary Education Part 3 – Vocational Schools

 
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We can divide vocational schools in this country according to whether they are completed with a vocational certificate or school leaving examination. Those who are awarded the vocational certificate acquire the authorisation to perform a certain craft. Graduates from a vocational school with the school leaving examination may either perform a certain profession or continue with studies at university or college.

 
 
The Czech Republic has recently witnessed an ebb in interest in the study at vocational schools, which prepare students for the performance of a certain profession.

The top positions in vocational school popularity charts have for years been occupied by business academies, medical and pedagogical schools with the school leaving examination. The business academies and economic schools provide good preparation for studies at universities focusing on economics and management, tourism, hotel management and the like.
The lowest demand is currently for studies at engineering industrial schools. The schools respond to the decrease in demand in several ways: While some offer students stays abroad, others strive to open new fields that students might find attractive. A good example of this is the Agricultural Secondary School in Benešov, which opened the Golf Course Maintenance study programme for the first time in 2009, and teaches students how to take proper care of golf courses, tend the greens and play golf. Although this country can boast 82 golf courses, there is still a lack of qualified “greenkeepers”. The Sculpture and Stonemasonry School in Hořice in the Hradec Králové region, which is the Czech Republic’s only school to teach the Stone Quarrying and Processing study programme, is another example of the attempts to increase the attractiveness of studies. Graduates from this school are sought after in this country and abroad and will find their fulfilment as technicians in quarries or laboratories performing rock tests or can take to the arts and devote their time to the noble stonecutter's profession. The Secondary Artistic Organ Building School in Krnov is special in that it offers the unique Organ Building study programme. It has also initiated Guitar Building and Artistic Furniture Making study programmes.

A number of secondary schools whose students do not take the school leaving examination, but receive merely a vocational certificate, have been struggling with decreasing interest for several decades. Whereas the cook, car mechanic or hair dresser programmes still attract students, virtually no one is interested in the crafts of carpenters, millers, tinsmiths or upholsterers any more.
Nonetheless, these schools also attempt to appeal to pupils leaving primary schools and provide them with pensions or a chance to earn money while studying or open study programmes which will enable them to perform a non-traditional profession, earn a good wage and not be worried about their future jobs. For instance only the students at the Secondary Vocational School in Horní Bříza in the Pilsen Region will learn how to build a stylish and functional stove, and will never be short of contracts.

 
Author: Andrea Kábelová
 
Added: 25.10.2010
 
 
 

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