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Denmark: major national VET initiative

Danish vocational educational and training (VET) is still suffering from lack of attractiveness and high drop-out. The Danish parliament has agreed on several new initiatives aimed at making VET an attractive choice and supporting completion.  The initiatives focus on content and quality of VET provision, and on easing progression from primary schools into vocational education for young people.

The agreement includes initiatives totalling DKR 2.3 billion (EUR 0.308 billion) and makes VET exempted from the overall two percent annual cut on education expenses.

The initiatives foresee an increased role for municipalities in young people’s education. Teachers should offer more practical training. Learning environments should be improved through dissemination of good practice, and VET colleges are generally expected to develop stronger and more inclusive cultures.

The main points are:

  • establishing a national programme of activities related to young people’s choice of education;
  • establishing an expert council to make recommendations on how to strengthen the introductory education of young people and on a new model for assessing their readiness for education;
  • municipalities should set local goals for the number of young people in education;
  • nationwide efforts to develop and disseminate good practices for educational environments;
  • increasing use of boarding facilities in vocational schools in sparsely populated areas;
  • introducing the option for future vocational apprentices to make agreements with business while still in lower secondary education;
  • increasing emphasis on the practical element of teaching for VET teachers;
  • increasing emphasis on practical and vocational elements in primary school.