November 11, 2018

The Onsite Assessment Program (OAP) of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) conducted in Singapore recently was a huge success, following a record-breaking increase in the number of OFWs who availed of the program.

TESDA reported a 258% boost in the activity as compared to the number of assessed and certified individuals during the intial onsite assessment conducted in 2015 in the same country.

By far, this is also the highest on record for countries where TESDA has been holding the OAP from 2014 up to Oct. 2018 such as United Arab Emirates (UAE), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), Qatar, Kuwait, Hong Kong and Singapore.

“We have seen a significant increase of assessed and certified workers in the OAP in Singapore, almost 260% more than the last numbers logged in the same country,” according to TESDA Director General, Secretary Isidro S. Lapeña.

“What is even more encouraging is that the Singapore numbers are also the highest ever recorded in the 4-year history of the TESDA Onsite Assessment Program. This is a welcome development and we are optimistic that this trend will continue,” addsLapeña.

The series of two onsite assessments, successfully staged last Sept. 22-23 and 29-30, 2018 in Singapore, were made possible through the assistance of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Overseas Filipino Welfare Administration (OWWA), and Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO).

A total of 419 applicants for the OAP came from various Filipino organizations/associations and training centers based in Singapore this year. Of this, 326 have been certified either with National Certificates (NC) or Certificates of Competency (COC) in Bread and Pastry Production NC ll, Cookery NC ll, Health Care Services NC ll and Caregiving NC ll. This is equivalent to a 77.80 percent certification rate.

Most of the beneficiaries of the 2018 OAP are females who either work as domestic or household service workers in Singapore.

Records estimate that some 40% of the candidates for assessment have received college level education, while 20% of them are degree holders or college graduates. The remaining 40% finished high school or post-secondary or are technical vocational (tech-voc) graduates.


The significant increase in the numbers of assessed and certified OFWs is believed to be due to the continued acknowledgement of the TESDA assessment and certification program in Singapore.

“The increase in the turnout for the OAP can be attributed to the growing acceptance and recognition of TESDA’s assessment and certification program not only among OFWs but with employers as well,” according to TESDA Deputy Director General for TESD Operations Alvin S. Feliciano.

Singapore is one of the identified countries in Asia for the TESDA OAP because of the large number of OFWs, engaged mostly as domestic or household service workers. The first OAP in Singapore was conducted in 2015, during which 114 were assessed and 80 were certified.

The OAP in Singapore was also supported by the Care Academy, AIMS Training International, Home Academy, The Master’s International, and Filipino Overseas Workers/Bayanihan Centre-Singapore, all of which served as the assessment venues in that country for 2018.

Since 2014, TESDA has been offering free assessment and certification services through the OAP for OFWs. Aside from Singapore, the OAP is currently being conducted in the United Arab Emirates (Dubai and Abu Dhabi), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (Jeddah and Riyadh), Qatar, Kuwait, and Hong Kong.

From 2014 up to the 2nd quarter of 2018, the number of beneficiaries of the program has reached 2,475. Of this number, 1,984 were certified either with National Certificates (NC) or Certificates of Competency (COC).

The primary objective of the OAP is to equip OFWs, particularly those employed in vulnerable occupations, to retain and improve their current livelihood, whether by being employed or as an entrepreneur, through TESDA certifications.