The schoolbell also struck for the third issue of the annual magazine of the Bulgarian Industrial Association “Noblesse Oblige”. We decided to dedicate it to the topics of education and professional qualification. As you well know, there are dozens of problems facing the education system, starting with funding and regarding the quantity and quality of staff.
According to PISA data, concerning Bulgaria, 37.9% of the science students, 41.5% in reading and 42% in mathematics are well below the functional literacy threshold. The average mark of the state matriculation exams in Bulgarian language and literature for 2019 is marked as "Good (4.06)". This is the weakest performance of young adults since this format was introduced in 2008.
Vocational problems are also serious. In the middle of this year, BIA conducted a survey among employers in the Dobrich region. 79% of the respondents stated that they lacked professional specialists, and 50% said they lacked senior management. The findings also indicate a discrepancy between the demand for business personnel and the training that young people prefer. 64% of the Bulgarian economy needs technicians with technical education, while those who are educated in such disciplines are only 27%. The shortage of skilled labor is currently 35% compared to 7% in 2010. And the best ideas of entrepreneurs may remain unfulfilled and even fail because of the lack of quality workers.
But ... identifying problems does not make sense unless we offer a solution and share good examples. This issue is dedicated to those of them!
The team tried to take you to the city of the first secular school in Bulgaria - Gabrovo, to see how much of the world model is developing the economy there today. You will meet a person who does not teach for the school but for life itself - the teacher Teodosii Teodosiev. You can also sit down briefly on the student benches with the rectors of the Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski ", the Technical University - Sofia, the Medical University - Sofia, and the University of National and World Economy; you could also find out what's new in the International Business School and at the New Bulgarian University. You will also learn how children from the Sofian High School of Mathematics were able to create a platform in a few months that connects students with employers from all over the country. We will also introduce Dimitrina Todorova – the Director of the newest school in Burgas - Vocational High School for Computer Programming and Innovation. Everything will pass under the keen eye of Education Minister Krasimir Valchev, who began the school year with an interview for Noblesse Oblige readers.
No less space is given to the work environment and to those employers who invest in the creation and development of their staff. More than 170 are the companies that have joined the Domino project for training future employees, providing them with opportunities for practice, mentors and remuneration while still studying. We will also introduce some young entrepreneurs who have studied abroad but have returned to Bulgaria to create their own businesses. We have chosen to show you a Frenchman who has chosen our country for training and starting a business. I believe that you will also have something to learn from BIA Honorary Member Shefket Chapadzhiev, who leaves Madan to become the richest Bulgarian in the United States. You will also understand the future of the MyCompetence Competency Assessment System, to which we have attracted over 2.3 million people and through which we are looking for new opportunities in the labor market.
This issue of Noblesse Oblige is not compulsory, but it is useful! Enjoy reading!
Chairman of BIA