A longitudinal study, published in August 2018, measured the success rate (percentage of learners completing the programme in three years) of professional programmes, (cursos Profissionais). It examined the number of learners that failed to complete the programmes, the number of student transfers to other programmes, and the dropout rate. The study concluded that the success rate of professional programmes increased from 53% in 2014/15 to 60% in 2016/17.
Portugal has developed the Exit profile of students leaving compulsory education (Order -Despacho No 6478/2017, de 26 de Julho). This profile is a frame of reference based on specific principles: freedom of choice, responsibility, work appraisal, self-awareness, family, community and social inclusion. A new decree-law (Decreto-lei No 55/2018, de 6 de Julho), issued by the education and labour ministries, relates explicitly the exit profile of students leaving compulsory education with the following VET programmes: professional, art education, and education and training programmes for young people.
Following successful public consultation, the government has approved a new decree-law (Decreto-lei no 55/2018, de 6 de julho), which defines the new organisational principles of primary and upper secondary education curricula. It covers specific VET programmes: professional, art education, and education and training programmes for young people. The government’s priority is to guarantee equal opportunities and success for learners both in general and vocational education.
Futurália, the largest education, training and employability exhibition in the country, was held in Lisbon from 14 to 17 March 2018.
The Portuguese Government launched the Youth pass certificate in November 2017. This is a recognition and validation instrument for competences acquired by young people via non-formal education; it is also a personalised free-of-charge certificate that, over time, can be updated with new competences.
The Portuguese Directorate-General for Employment and Labour Relations (DGERT) and the ReferNet team had a meeting with representatives of VET-related national entities on 12 December 2017 at the premises of the Ministry of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security. The aim of the meeting was to establish a network of ReferNet Portugal and national entities to cooperate in carrying out the ReferNet’s 2018 work plan.
State of art 2016, a document on VET and employment for those with disabilities, was presented in public on 2 June 2017 at the Institute for Employment and Vocational Training (IEFP). The event was attended by 42 VET providers from all over the country.
The Vocational Training Centre of the Metal Industry (CENFIM) coordinated and concluded in 2017 LearnIT: learning tools and routes for individual training. This Erasmus+ project was launched two years ago and was a partnership between Portugal, Germany, Spain and Finland.
High professional technical programmes (cursos técnicos superiores profissionais, CTSP) are higher education short-term training programmes (Portaria –Ordinance- nº 782/2009, de 23 de Julho). They offer students the basis for developing professional or vocational activity, and may also lead to higher level studies. These programmes have the advantage of offering learners the possibility of entering the labour market immediately after graduation, which leads to an increase in their employability.
The President of the Portuguese Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, participated in the 7th Congress of the National Association of Professional Schools (ANESPO) in July 2017. He committed Portugal to making increased investment in vocational education, raising the number of VET learners and reducing early school leaving rates.