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Centres for adult education and continuing training (VEU-centres)

Policy Instrument

Centres for adult education and continuing training (VEU-centres)

Voksen- og EfterUddannelsesCentrene
Denmark

Description

Timespan

The centres have been in operation since they were launched in 2010.

Stage

Fully operational

Foundations

Policy area

VEU-centres coordinate guidance activities for schools providing adult vocational training programmes.

Policy goal

The centres target vocational training of enterprises as well as individual learners. The centres aim at creating greater focus on the quality and effect of vocational training system. The objective of the VEU-centres is to strengthen the cooperation between educational institutions and, through cooperation, get a larger volume of vocational students and thereby establish a more stable and flexible supply of continuing vocational education. All providers of adult vocational training are associated with one of the 13 VEU-centres, each coordinating guidance activities, contact to enterprises and employees etc for a specific geographical area.

Mismatch

Part of broader programme, yet with explicit focus

The centres coordinate guidance activities for the schools that provide adult vocational training programmes.

Administrative level

Regional

Main responsible body

Ministry of Education

Stakeholders

A VEU-centre is a partnership between several schools in one geographical area. One of the schools is the host institution of the VEU-centre and is thus the legal entity in relation to the Ministry of Education.

Funding

It has not been possible to find information on the number of funds that are committed to the VEU-centres.

Intended beneficiaries

The educational programmes are mainly provided for low skilled and skilled workers having a job. Workers and employers in private, as well as public sector enterprises may participate in the programmes.

Processes

Use of labour market intelligence

By providing adult vocational education, based on regional demands identified by local stakeholders, the VEU-centres contribute to the goal of skill matching by updating individuals’ skills in a relevant area.

Financial schemes

State grant. The board of the educational institution responsible for the VEU-centre is responsible for the management of state grants, from the Ministry of Education.

Frequency of updates

On-going, i.e. the VEU-centre is responsible to study the need for competence development needs at companies and employees in the geographical area.

Development

There has not been any policy change in the approach since the VEU-centres were established in 2010.

Barriers

Six months after the establishment of the VEU-centres, an evaluation (EVA, 2010) showed that the process of finding a responsible host institution to be responsible of the management of the centre was very resilient and resulted in some bad relations between the institutions within the VEU-centre. According to the evaluation, it was difficult to choose one host institution among the many institutions in the geographical area. Each institution in the area had the opportunity to appoint one institution to be a host of the VEU-centre, but it was difficult to agree among the institutions, as too many wanted to be a host institution. The Minister of Education made the final decision. It meant that the centres were implemented at different speed. However, the 13 VEU-centres are fully operational today.

Success factors

Due to the institutional cooperation between the educational institutions within a geographical area, the construction of VEU-centres has improved the coordination of the activities to improve the vocational skills and competences of the participants in accordance with the needs in the labour market.

Monitoring

A development contract between the VEU-centre and the Ministry of Education contains objectives and performance requirements for the VEU-centre's tasks and cooperation in order to meet the objectives of the VEU-centre.

Innovativeness

Slightly innovative

The intention to cooperate between educational institutions was not new or ground-breaking, as a number of cooperative relations already existed on their own initiative. However, the construction of VEU-centre was innovative, in the sense that the institutional collaboration was a mandatory initiative dictated by law.

Sustainability

Evidence of effectiveness

There are two main evaluations of the VEU-centres: 1) EVA, 2012 and 2) EVA, 2014. In these evaluations, the centres' effectiveness and impact according to their objectives are assessed differently. On the one side, the evaluations shows that the construction of a coordinating body of the educational institutions has raised the awareness of the vocational educational programmes for SMEs. However, the evaluation also shows that there is room for improvement. Some VEU-centres find it difficult to gain support for marketing of the VEU-centre, as a one-point entrance to the adult vocational training system.

Engagement of stakeholders

The VEU-centres sign an agreement with the Ministry of Education every two year. The contract contains three strategic areas of actions and performance targets based on the legislation. The VEU-centre is responsible to follow the contracts goals and report annually to the Ministry.

Transferability

Easily transferable

The opportunity to transfer the instrument of VEU-centre to another country depends on the system for adult vocational training. In Denmark, the social partners develop the competence description of the vocational training (not the educational institutions). Therefore, it is easier for the educational institutions to coordinate their activities, because of the joint competence description that apply to all institutions.

Sustainability

Yes, but in a stronger setup with fewer centres that will include a wider range of educational institutions and business relevant actors. Recently, an expert committee on adult education and training pointed out the need to strengthen the partnership between educational institutions and other business actors.