On 1 May 2023, the government regulations allowing recognition of competences for VET admission entered into force. They introduced principles of the Council Recommendation Upskilling pathways: new opportunities for adults in the national legislation.
The legislation defines criteria and procedures for evaluation and recognition of a person’s competences, which allow them to enrol in a VET programme without repeatedly acquiring competences, i.e. without repeating a part of a VET programme they have already completed elsewhere. This allows for faster and more efficient professional qualification acquisition. The legislation foresees three main steps:
- skills assessment;
- learning offer;
- validation and recognition.
The assessment helps identify a person’s existing skills and upskilling needs, and serves as a basis for designing an individual study plan. The learning offer follows the assessment, and considers the individual’s needs, including guidance, support measures, and individual and flexible approaches to learning. Validation and recognition allow an individual to have their learning recognised and acquire a professional qualification certificate.
A person can be admitted to a VET programme after a break, after obtaining another professional qualification, after recognition of competences acquired outside of formal education, after changing VET institutions or after changing VET programmes.
Early leavers from education and training, and those not in education, employment or training (NEETs) can return to the VET programme they dropped out from, resume their studies following an individual study plan, and receive the support they need.
The regulations set out the application and assessment procedures. The latter are important if a person does not have all the necessary documentary evidence of their former education and training. In this case, they take a competence test or provide an employer statement on their skills. The VET school head decides on accepting the person into a programme based on the recommendation of an internal commission of three experts.
The legislation aims at promoting a more flexible VET system focused on the needs of individuals. It will also allow for more learners to receive a VET qualification.
Please cite this news item as: ReferNet Latvia; Cedefop (2023). Latvia: upskilling pathways introduced in legislation. National news on VET