Cramming does not prepare students for the future, DofE does


A growing number of employers perceive the need to transform education in the Czech Republic. The character of human work is changing significantly, and therefore the traditional educational system based on cramming must be supplemented by the development of critical and creative thinking, the ability to solve problems and implement projects.

This follows from a survey by ABSL association that brings together business service providers on the Czech market. To support the development of these skills ABSL welcomed DofE (The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award) as its honorary member. This organization provides under the auspices of the British Royal Family non-formal education to young people around the world and pass on important competencies for future careers that they will not receive at school.

„In the Czech Republic, education focuses too much on meaningless exams and assessments that do not prove or build children’s abilities. The repeated disputes with the company Cermat, which takes care of uniform entrance exams and has long been criticized for testing only a section of students’ knowledge, and not their study prerequisites are an example of this problem. Rather, we should develop the character of children and the skills they will really need when entering the labour market,“ explains Jonathan Appleton, ABSL’s director and says:

„To support the development of young people talents in the Czech Republic, we have established cooperation and partnership with the organization DofE, whose program we actively promote among our members.“

This program is based on the idea that a person acquires the most knowledge through their own experience and practice. At the same time, it emphasizes helping the weak and communities and leads young people to charitable activities and sports.

More and more skilled work is going to the Czech Republic, only the business services sector will increase by 50,000 new jobs by 2025, according to ABSL estimates. The development of new talents and potential future employees is, therefore, one of the priorities of companies.

Meaningful education under the guidance of a mentor

DofE is an international program under the auspices of the British Royal Family, which motivates all young people aged from 14 to 24 to personal development. Young people participate in the program through certified schools or by direct registration on the DofE website. In collaboration with a mentor, they first identify their goals and then work on a project to help them achieve that goal. The participants thus strengthen their responsibility and perseverance, get to know and overcome themselves and acquire new skills useful for further study and work. Goals can be different, but it is important that the individual enjoys and develops their fulfillment.

„Through the program, participants will gain the necessary confidence and understand that a systematic approach and appropriate efforts are needed to achieve the set goals. In addition, after completing the program, they will also receive an internationally recognized certificate,“ says Tomáš Vokáč, director DofE in the Czech Republic.

ABSL calls for the involvement of other members in the program

More than eight million young people in more than 140 countries are now involved in the project. The program has been operating in the Czech Republic since 1995 and currently involves only around 5,000 adolescents, which is not enough for what the labor market needs.

„We would like to help raise this number to as many as 60,000 students involved,“ says Jonathan Appleton and adds: „We help raise awareness of this program and want companies in our industry to become cooperating mentors. It will pay off for them in the form of a new generation of job seekers who will be better prepared for their careers.

Join in the celebrations of Prince Philip’s legacy

“From June 10, we will launch the fundraising call # dofe100 in honor of Prince Philip’s late hundredth birthday, in which young people, corporate employees and the general public can experience how DofE works. Those interested will fulfill the challenges in the number of one hundred – they will read one hundred books, do one hundred clicks, they will spend a hundred minutes volunteering in a home for the elderly, they will learn one hundred new foreign words and the like. The call aims to support the restart of active life of children and young people after the pandemic and to enable the fulfillment of the program even for socially disadvantaged young people through the DofE Social Fund, “adds Tomáš Vokáč.

You can find more information on the program website


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