To further spur rural development, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) has urged farmers, cooperatives, and entrepreneurs to establish more farm schools in their respective localities.
TESDA Deputy Director General Aniceto D. Bertiz III shared that increased agriculture-based training can improve the productivity and competitiveness of farmers.
"Providing access to technical vocational education and training or TVET through agri-fishery farm schools is a strategy to achieve the long-term goal of development for rural areas," he said in a statement.
“This training has been designed so that our farmers will have the right knowledge, skills and attitudes that will help increase their agricultural production through new technologies and entrepreneurial activities,” Bertiz added.
As part of its enterprise-based training or “EBT to the Max” initiative, TESDA has been implementing the Program on Accelerating Farm School Establishment (PAFSE) to promote the proliferation of farm schools, and the use of a “farmer to farmer, learning by doing” methodology.
To be able to offer agri-related programs, farms can be less than one hectare or even larger than 10 hectares in area. Some 62 training programs may be registered with TESDA and offered to the public under the PAFSE.
These include such qualification titles as Agricultural Crop Production, Aquaculture, Horticulture, Organic Agriculture Production, Rice Machinery Operations, and Animal Production among many others.
Costs of training and assessment will be covered by TESDA’s Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP). Target beneficiaries of the program include farmers and fisherfolk and their relatives, as well as members of the community where the farm school is situated.
TESDA said there are 399 farmer field school programs registered with the agency and being implemented in various farm schools as well as private and public institutions nationwide.