Voucher Program

Afghanistan Second Skills Development Project (ASDPII)

Voucher Program

1. Overview

The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan has received a grant from the International Development Agency (IDA) for the Afghanistan Second Skills Development Project (ASDPII). The said project aims to increase the potential for employment and higher earnings of graduates from Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) schools and institutes through improvements in the skills delivery system

A sub-component of the project will fund a Voucher Program (VP) for meritorious students to pursue further professional certification programs. The total number of vouchers proposed to be provided will be about 1000. Attention will be paid to the process of selecting students. Currently, this process (introduced as a pilot under the ongoing ASDP I) involves a selection test, interview, and counseling. The final decision on beneficiaries is made at the level of the Office of the Minister of Education. The process will be strengthened to ensure that   there is clear transparency throughout the selection process.

Vouchers will be given for pursuing professional courses specifically in Accounting, HR, Banking, Insurance, Procurement, Logistics and Operations, Advanced diploma-level technical courses (Specialized Welding, Instrumentation, Power Electrician, etc.). The program will be open to students of all institutes accredited by DMTVET. As a special affirmative action, the program will be open also to students of schools for the visually and hearing impaired accredited by DMTVET.

2. Objective

The objectives of VP are providing incentives that will: (a) increase the attractiveness of formal VET training to students; (b) supporting meritorious students to complete further professional diplomas in chosen fields; and (c) providing support to female students who wish to pursue further professional training.

3. Authority for Selection to the Program –

The authority for recommendations on Selection of students to the program is the Project Standing Committee. The Project Standing Committee will make its recommendations to the Grants Approval Committee headed by the Minister of Education. The Grants Approval Committee is the final authority for approving Voucher Program Beneficiary List.

A Voucher Program Committee (VPC) will be constituted and headed by Deputy Minister of TVET; the VP committee will consist of:

– Int’l Teachers from TVET institutions;

– Int’l Advisor from outside;

– Representative from Ministry of Higher Education/Universities;

– Representative from Ministry of Labour/NSDP;

– Representative from Private Sector;

The VPC will evaluate the examination papers and make its recommendations.

4. Eligibility and Selection 

Eligibility: All final year students of Grade XIV in TVET institutes accredited by the DMTVET are eligible to apply.  Students wishing to participate in the program may submit their applications to the administration of the institute where they are studying; the institute will then formally send the entire documents and list of interested students to the School Development Dept (SDD) within the DMTVET. The applications will be screened by the SDD and the VPC to eliminate incomplete or otherwise deficient applications, and a short list shall be made.

Selection: Selection will be done on the basis of the results of a Written Test. The written test consists of (a) General knowledge, (b) English language, and (c) Math. The passing marks will be fixed by the Voucher Program committee.

All short-listed students will be informed by SDD via phone, email, board notice, institute/school administration, website and media to appear for the written test at the specified date and time. All short-listed students shall be informed well in advance (a week earlier) to appear for the written test at Kabul, the place will be specified accordingly.

5. Special Considerations:

There will be a quota of 40% for female students. There will also be a quota of 2% for disabled students. The quota will be applied in the following manner:

  • Of the students qualifying in a selection examination, a total list of potential awardees for the year will be prepared. The list will be of 300 students.
  • The total number of awardees for a given year shall be 200.
  • Of this number, 84 shall be reserved seats (80 for females and 4 for disabled)
  • The balance of 116 shall be awarded on merit (marks obtained in the examination).
  • The 84 seats will be filled from the reserved category students according to merit.
  • Provided that, for filling the reserved categories, persons included in the first list 116 shall not be counted.
  • If the total list of 300 still does not yield enough numbers to fill the seats, then the list will be made longer. However, the seats will not be filled by putting names of persons who fail the examination.

6. Process of Award:

The final list of awardees shall be presented by the VPC which will then recommend the list to the Project Standing Committee. The Project Standing Committee will in turn forward its recommendations to the Grants Approval Committee (GAC) of the project chaired by the Minister of Education. GAC will approve the final list.

7. Result Declaration

The exam paper will be checked by an independent VP committee comprises of Int’l teacher, DMTVET’s representative and student’s representative, at this stage, they will select 200 students whom are obtained high marks or meet the above mentioned criteria. Strictest secrecy is to be maintained regarding the examination, marking, tabulation and moderation.

The result will be declared after 14 days of exam.

The result will be published in ministry and ASDP website, notice board at SDD, and inform relevant institute/school administration formally.

8. Enrollment Guidelines

The voucher program will follow the guidelines as given below:

  • All selected and passed students will be asked to submit their (a) educational documents such as institute/school certificate, English proficiency, computer certificate and others (b) fill the guarantee form by accepting our term & condition, it should be signed by the elder family member and local guardian. All selected & passed student must enroll themselves in a professional or licentiate course for which the money will be needed, a student counselor may assist them in this regard. The SDD will maintain the entire VP data for the entire program.
  • DMTVET will arrange for all selected students to be counseled to help them to select the most appropriate institution and subject to pursue further professional training and education.
  • Students will then apply for admission to the identified schools or institutes for the identified courses.
  • The condition for receiving the voucher is an official document attesting that the candidate is enrolled in a professional course.
  • The academic part of the voucher amount will be remitted directly to the enrolling institute.
  • Student files shall be opened at the DMTVET and regular follow-up with the enrolling institutes regarding student performance shall be made by DMTVET.
  • In case a student fails to clear the examinations etc. of the enrolling institution as per its rules and is asked to leave the institute, the voucher program shall be suspended for that student.
  • In no case shall the voucher amount be increased.
  • The credibility and reputation of the institutions selected by the students shall be examined by the project team or appointed team at DMTVET before release of any Voucher Amount.
  • Student shall be asked to sign an Agreement with DMTVET before s/he is disbursed any money.
  • The amount of voucher is US$5,000 (80% for academic costs and 20% for support costs such as expenditure of airfare to attend the final exam or per-diem for living to attend the final exam) in total, regardless of the length of the academic program.  In other words, the average cost is $2500 per year with the mean length of these funded courses about two years. Normally, a technical program is over two years at least, to lead to a Diploma in any country in the sub-region.
  • The course fee will be processed by the finance department of Skills Team and will pay the institution based on the received invoice and acceptance letter. The specified amount will transferred to the institute’s account.
  • The amount should be transferred in two installments at least, subject to the course schedule and duration of the study program;
  • If total money required exceeds Voucher amount balance ($5,000), the exceeded amount has to be paid by student.