Recognizing prior learning in Madagascar

Implementation continues for Madagascar’s National Employment and Vocational Training Policy (PNEFP), developed with the support of UNESCO’s Capacity Development for Education (CapED) Programme. Several reforms relating to the country’s diplomas and certification system are beginning to take shape, such as the development of a national framework of certifications (CNMC) draft decrees, and the implementation of Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

The CapED Programme supports the country to systematically improve the quality and efficiency of technical and vocational education and training at the national level through the establishment of a modern certification system, drawn on international standards, which, above all, will be able to support youth and adults on their path of lifelong learning.

The RPL enables working people to formally document the skills and knowledge they have developed throughout their life, and to obtain a corresponding diploma or certificate based on a standardized reference system. It aims to tackle the societal, social and economic challenges that Madagascar’s society currently faces.

Since 2018, the actions, developed with CapED support, have made it possible to solidify the concept of RPL in the country. The individual right to RPL is enshrined in the law relating to the PNEFP and was further protected in a decree adopted towards the end of 2018.

In 2019, the regulatory framework and RPL technical devices were finalized and tested in two priority sectors and the first diplomas obtained through RPL were awarded. Concurrently, diplomas offered through the RPL system underwent a first phase of restructuring in order to ensure compatibility with the principles of RPL and to build individualized training paths.

RPL will undergo a large-scale pilot operation in 2020, which will affect all priority sectors (10 diplomas available) and which will foreshadow the development of RPL in the country. What is more, several ministries are already interested in implementing RPL in their departments, including defence, decentralization, finance and budgets, and national education.

The success of Madagascar’s RPL design is based on a partnership approach with all stakeholders, including ministries, the economic sector, and training operators. This approach will be reinforced in the future in view of making the RPL available in all regions and for the entire population.