Austria (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
There are no special actions to provide disadvantaged learners with support tailored to their specific needs in regard to international learning mobility although it is possible for those learners to participate in the Erasmus+ programmes. However, the Austrian National Agency is considering setting up additional support for this target group for the next funding period.

Belgium-DE (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
No actions have been taken.

Belgium-FR (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
No specific measure was taken: the ERASMUS+ programme is open on equal terms to any student in higher or vocational education who wishes to participate. The Marshall Plan 4.0 grants are also available for all IVET and CVET learners.

Belgium-FL (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The ERASMUS+ programme is open on equal terms to any student in higher or vocational education who wishes to participate. No action has been specifically put in place for the mobility of disadvantaged learners.

Bulgaria (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions were taken in two dimensions.
Information and guidance
At school/university level, information about special mobility opportunities for learners with disabilities is provided during the information campaigns; however, there are no special measures to encourage the disadvantaged learners to participate.
Funding
The Erasmus+ allocates special funds for supporting participants with specific needs, which are used in case such participants are included in mobility.

Croatia (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The country has taken actions in the following dimensions.

Information and guidance, including targeted information on available programmes
AMEUP informs possible applicants about the possibilities available in the Erasmus+ programme for the participation of students with disabilities and disadvantaged learners. In the context of the Erasmus+ programme, disadvantaged learners are defined as students with fewer opportunities, which refers to students with social, economic or geographical obstacles, cultural differences and health problems. Such information is provided at every Erasmus+ presentation, during informative days, meetings, webinars or counselling activities.

Funding, including portability
Erasmus+ programme offers special budget categories for students with disabilities and disadvantaged learners as to stimulate the inclusion of those learners in projects. AMEUP regularly presents these opportunities in information events. AMEUP also published a leaflet with the information on possibilities for involvement and participation of participants with fewer opportunities.

Motivation
Through its work with VET providers and promotional activities, the Agency for Mobility and EU Programmes emphasizes the need to include disadvantaged learners into mobility projects, and tries to stimulate their inclusion by highlighting the benefits both for students and for the organisation.

Preparation
Depending on the category of the disadvantaged learners, the beneficiary organisations are using the referred budget categories to provide those learners with all the necessary arrangements for the mobility period, e.g. additional arrangements (if needed) for their travel, additional equipment, additional accompanying person etc.

Cyprus (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The country has taken actions in the following dimensions. The CY Erasmus+ National Agency provides information and guidance to the beneficiary IVET schools, for international learning mobility of the disadvantaged learners. The programme also provides real cost coverage of the expenses for the mobility of the disadvantaged students and also extra help with more accompanying persons during mobility. In short-term mobility (2 weeks min.: 10 working days), whole IVET classes, including a number of disadvantaged students, are selected for mobility. This encourages the disadvantaged students to participate because they have the support of both their teachers and their schoolmates.

Czechia (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The disadvantaged IVET learners participating in mobility projects within the Erasmus+ programme receive additional funding and/or support (for example for accompanying assistants).

Denmark (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The country has taken actions here in terms of funding. The Danish Production Schools are legally defined as VET institutions. Consequently, the National Agency has included the Production Schools in the Erasmus+ programme on equal terms. The Production Schools can apply for extra grants to support disadvantaged groups according to the general terms for Erasmus+. The Production Schools' main task is to prepare and develop students to be part of the educational system. They have a number of students who are challenged in respect of social behaviour, learning disabilities or other handicaps that constitute a barrier for education.

Estonia (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions have been taken in the areas of information, funding and preparation.
Information
At national level (at Foundation Innove), a special position has been created – SEN coordinator, who is responsible for counseling VET schools, parents and students concerning forthcoming questions. As SEN coordinator is in tight contact and cooperates with Foundation Archimedes, sharing the information about mobility programmes is a result. Also, SEN coordinator gathers together teachers and support personnel from VET schools at least twice a year to share best practice which is another way of allocating knowledge about mobility programmes.
Funding
In the context of the Erasmus+ mobility programme, students with special educational needs are a specific target group. In the case of mobility for special education pupils, it is possible to apply for additional support, including support for an accompanying person. According to the rules of the programme, the costs of the accompanying person are covered.
Preparation
According to the specifics of their disability, pupils with special educational needs have a specific preparation for the mobility period. Schools describe their preparation plans for the learner in their application materials. Psychological and professional preparation are the most important aspects of the general preparation process. Practical aid is given by the accompanying person during the whole mobility process.

Finland (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions were taken in four directions.

1. Information and guidance
Within the framework of the “Internationalisation for all” project of EDUFI, information on best practices for increasing the participation of disadvantaged groups in mobility was collected and disseminated countrywide and is still used. These groups are e.g. students with learning difficulties, with different kinds of mental/physical handicaps, with weak socioeconomic background and also boys as they are underrepresented in mobility. Recipients of this information were the VET providers, which are also the main organisers of VET mobility in Finland and key players in encouraging disadvantaged learners to take part in mobility actions (1). In the Erasmus+ information and training seminars disadvantaged learners in mobility is a regular theme and VET providers are invited also to share good practices with each others.

2. Funding
The Erasmus+ National Agency in EDUFI covers the exceptional costs induced by special needs as an additional part of the Erasmus+ programme financing.

3. Motivation
Within the “Internationalisation for all” project, emphasis was put on highlighting the added value of mobility and increasing the social recognition of mobility, especially for disadvantaged groups. The goal was to increase the awareness of disadvantaged learners of the advantages of going on mobility periods abroad, especially as regards employment and work life skills.

4. Use of multipliers
Young people in Finland today, including disadvantaged groups, follow to a large extent social media such as YouTube and Instagram. Famous YouTube vloggers (video blog) can have as many as 300 000 followers. In 2016 a selected group of vloggers were used as a role model for disadvantaged learners, as they are very well followed by disadvantaged VET students, young boys and the target group in general.
____________
(1) http://www.cimo.fi/palvelut/tutkimus-_ja_selvitystoiminta/valmistuneet_s...

France (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions have been taken in the following two dimensions:

1. Information and guidance
Projects specifically targeted at young people with fewer opportunities («Jeunes Ayant Moins D’opportunités” - JAMO) promote their access to international mobility. For example, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, a project was designed to create a network of structures ensuring the provision of information, guidance and support to young people having problems with social and professional integration, also to improve their access to international mobility.
Several websites offer specific information on European mobility aid for young people with disabilities: the "Ma voie pro en Europe" website published by ONISEP; the "Droit au savoir" website; and the Erasmus+ France Education and Training Agency website, which also offers a leaflet on this subject (1).

2. Funding
A disabled student who wants to go on a placement abroad may receive specific support, for example:
- Students with disabilities who choose international mobility are entitled to retain their disability compensation benefit abroad, pursuant to the provisions of Article 1 of the decree of 29 June 2005.
- In the framework of the Erasmus exchanges, students with serious disabilities may benefit from additional mobility support from the Erasmus France agency.

3. Access to an internship abroad
The possibility to access to a 3-month (unpaid) internship in a company abroad is being extended. This mechanism originates in a pilot carried out in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. The target group is that of young people enrolled in the “Missions Locales” scheme, i.e. people with difficulties in terms of professional and social integration (2).
____________________
(1) http://mavoieproeurope.onisep.fr/blog/2017/06/27/quelles-aides-a-la-mob…
http://www.droitausavoir.asso.fr/index.php?option=com_content&view=arti…
http://www.agence-erasmus.fr/page/erasmus-handicap
https://www.agence-erasmus.fr/docs/2426_flyer-abilympics.pdf
(2) https://www.actualite-de-la-formation.fr/le-quotidien-de-la-formation/a…

Germany (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
1. Information and guidance
The Federal Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS), the NA at BIBB (National Agency Education for Europe at the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training) and the IBS (Information and Guidance Service for International Mobility in VET) provide disadvantaged learners with support tailored to their specific needs in the context of different European funding programmes. The national benchmark for mobility in VET (1) also includes the participation of disadvantaged learners who have the possibility to undergo a training in the Dual System with different supporting possibilities (2). NA at BIBB as well as IBS also provide services to educational institutions working with disadvantaged people. The objective is to boost the numbers of disadvantaged learners participating in Erasmus+ mobility. For this purpose, the NA gives information and guidance to educational institutions and stakeholders on how they can organize and implement mobility projects for disadvantaged learners. (3) For example, the NA at BIBB organized in 2014 and 2017, two information and networking events for vocational schools. During this event, the NA at BIBB informed about the added value of learning mobility for disadvantaged learners and gave advice about professional implementation of stays abroad for disadvantaged learners (4 ). For the future, it is planned to initiate some cooperation initiatives with welfare organizations which provide Vocational Education and Training for disadvantaged learners. The NA at BIBB and the IBS also spread information for disadvantaged learners via the Internet, publication of best practices, and networks (5).
Also, the NA at BIBB commissioned a study about the impact of learning mobility abroad for disadvantaged learners (6). One objective of this empirical study was to research the best conditions for a successful implementation of mobility project for disadvantaged learners.
With regard to supporting disadvantaged learners in participating in international mobility, an important step in 2018 was that NA at BIBB became member of the Committee for people with disabilities (Ausschuss für Fragen behinderten Menschen, AFbM). This raises the topic to a broader level and allows NA to network more widely. In accordance with § 95 of the Vocational Education and Training Act (Berufsbildungsgesetz), this committee provides advice to the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (BIBB) concerning all aspects of vocational education and training for people with disabilities.

2.Funding
Possibilities for funding learning mobility of disadvantaged learners are given by the IDA initiative ("Integration through Exchange"), coordinated by the Federal Ministry for Family, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (BMFSFJ). It started in October 2008 and was funded by the ESF-programme (European Social Fund) plus 6.3 million euro from the budget of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. In addition, the project received 3 million Euro from the National Rehabilitation Fund attached to the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. It was the objective of IdA to give 4,000 participants, including 800 persons with a recognized severe disability, an opportunity to improve their occupational prospects. IdA funded projects to increase employment opportunities for disadvantaged young persons and unemployed young adults by promoting transnational exchange and mobility.
IdA ended as an autonomous scheme in 2014 and is now integrated in the new “Integration Directive” (7). Measures under the integration policy are implemented by cooperative networks with the active involvement of enterprises and public administration in tandem with regional public employment services (job centres/employment agencies). This brings about sustainable structural improvements to facilitate access to the labour market for the target groups.
The national service point in Germany “Jugend für Europa” (Youth for Europe), which is responsible for implementing the EU Youth Strategy, published in October 2016 an expert report concerning the results of different programmes, projects and initiatives for funding international mobility experiences for disadvantaged young people. This report has its focus on the youth sector but it also includes employment-related mobility in VET and gives an overview about different funding programmes in the youth sector. This report was published on behalf of the “Bund-Länder AG”, a working group of representatives of the national government and Lander and an important multiplier. This expert report formulates important measures for the future. It makes clear that cross-border offers have to be an integral part of the youth social work in Germany, which also concerns the field of VET.

3. Motivation
NA at BIBB as well as the IBS want to motivate educational organizations to give disadvantaged learners the possibility to learn abroad. For this purpose, they use testimonial stories in order to show the added value of learning mobility for disadvantaged people (8, 9, 10). Individual success stories of disadvantaged learners who stayed abroad are an important part of it. Also, a disadvantaged learner is part of the network “EuroApprentices”. This is a network for apprentices funded by Erasmus+, which motivates other leaners in IVET to participate in international mobility. In this sense, this young apprentice with hearing impairment tries to motivate other disadvantaged learners to live and learn abroad even with disabilities. (11)

4. Use of multipliers
NA at BIBB and IBS use their website to disseminate individual success stories of disadvantaged learners. In these stories, the learners have the opportunity to tell their experience from their point of view. As already mentioned above, a disadvantaged learner with hearing impairment is part of the network “EuroApprentices”.
__________
(1). http://dip21.bundestag.de/dip21/btd/17/109/1710986.pdf
(2). https://www.arbeitsagentur.de/web/content/DE/BuergerinnenUndBuerger/Ausb...
(3). For example, the IBS participate in the network “Jugenti” https://www.dija.de/themen/jugenti/, a network in the field of youth mobility
(4). https://www.na-bibb.de/service/veranstaltungsdokumentationen/erasmus-oe…
(5) https://www.machmehrausdeinerausbildung.de/deine-vorteile/erfahrungsber…
(6). “Grenzüberschreitende Mobilität bei sozial benachteiligen Jugendlichen in der Berufsbildung - Kompetenzerwerb und besonderer Nutzen der Auslandserfahrung“, 2011. https://www.na-bibb.de/service/publikationen/publikationsdetails/wk/anze...
(7). http://www.esf.de/portal/EN/Funding-period-2014-2020/ESF-Programmes/bmas...
(8). https://www.na-bibb.de/stories/erasmus-berufsbildung/ein-besonderes-aben...
(9). https://www.na-bibb.de/stories/erasmus-berufsbildung/das-hat-mein-leben-...
(10). https://www.na-bibb.de/stories/erasmus-berufsbildung/auch-du-kannst-es-s...
(11). https://www.machmehrausdeinerausbildung.de/deine-vorteile/erfahrungsber…

Greece (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions have been taken in two main directions to support the mobility of IVET learners with disadvantaged backgrounds and fewer opportunities, or having a kind of disability (i.e. physical, mental, sensory) and/or facing economic, social or geographical obstacles.
1. Information
The Hellenic National Erasmus+ Agency (IKY) provides targeted information through thematic seminars. In these seminars, disadvantaged beneficiaries and/or representatives of relevant organizations can transfer their experience, motivating other organizations to be involved.
2. Funding
In Erasmus+, a separate budget category, titled “Special Needs Support”, has been foreseen in order to further promote the participation of people with disabilities.

Hungary (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The international mobility of disadvantaged students is supported in secondary and higher education. The "Youth in Action" project was designed to that end.The project mainly focused on developing the communication skills, debate culture and group-work skills of the participants. The project included exchange programmes, joint conferences and exchange exercises. Information on the project is posted on the websites of the Tempus Public Foundation and the National Human Resources Fund.

Iceland (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The country has not taken any particular action in this area.

Ireland (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The country has taken actions in the area of Information and guidance. Two major channels are in place.

1. Study Abroad Without Limits
Study Abroad Without Limits is a forum on the LINK website. LINK aims to promoting the inclusion of students & graduates with disabilities. The forum offers information concerning studying and international mobility for 5 countries (Ireland, Belgium, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria). It provides a unique opportunity to learners and potential learners to contact local professionals and students who already have had the experience and gives information on how to organize learners’ stay abroad. The aim is to respond to practical questions on international mobility and in this way helps in the preparation for mobility.

2. Foróige
Foróige is a youth organisation in Ireland and has been working with young people since 1952 to enable young people aged 10-18 to involve themselves consciously and actively in their development and in the development of society. Foróige is governed by volunteers, but is funded by a range of bodies including the Department (Ministry) of Children and Youth Affairs, Education and Training Boards, the European Social Fund, and corporate sponsorship, among others. As part of its work, Foróige provides information (publications) on EU initiatives and services available to Irish citizens in the EU (e.g. Healthcare in the EU), ERASMUS+ programmes, Europass, EURES, the European Voluntary Service (EVS), among others. While not all potential users of this information are disadvantaged, it may also be used by the unemployed.

Italy (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Measures in terms of funding are in place. As a general rule, all types of grants for young people with disabilities or other specific problems formally recognized by national and /or regional public Authorities, and regularly provided by the social security system (INPS) are maintained during the participation in a mobility project. In addition, every project of international mobility organized by the Regions or any other authorized stakeholder provides for the cost of special services (like accompaniment and support for disadvantaged and disabled people). Any mobility project must be open to disadvantaged people and must ensure their access. Individual needs, according to the specific individual situation (tutors and carers, special busses and travel aids, medical support, etc.) are calculated and budgeted in advance during the planning phase. These costs will be borne by the project provided that they were foreseen in the budget.

Latvia (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions have been taken in four directions.

1. Funding
The State Education Development Agency (SEDA) informs VET schools and wider audience about Erasmus+ programme Special needs support. SEDA has published a leaflet ‘Erasmus+ for everybody! International mobility for people with special needs’ (see footnote 1 below) including information on additional financial support available for learners with special needs.
VET schools which provide IVET programmes for learners with special needs/disabilities inform learners about available Erasmus+ programme and Special needs support during school / group level events. Schools use Erasmus+ Special needs support providing mobility of learners with disabilities, e.g., for accompanying persons for learners during all the mobility period. Schools can also use special support available to learners “with reduced opportunities” (low socio economic background) to cover additional costs related to mobility, e.g., special work clothing.

2. Motivation
In VET school which provide IVET programmes for learners with special needs / disabilities, learners' motivation is ensured by mobility project coordinators, learners and teachers who already have mobility experience as well as by articles in the school’s website and social media (Facebook, Twitter) about mobility project and participants experience. An example is Smiltene Technical School which has territorial structural unit “Alsviķi” providing VET programmes for learners with disabilities. The school has implemented mobility projects for learners with disabilities and received a certificate of appreciation from the Erasmus+ National Agency on successful involvement of disabled learners in the Erasmus+ mobility. The school published articles about these mobility projects in its website (2). The article about receiving the certificate of appreciation is published in the regional portal “Alūksniešiem”, as well (3). Such information encourages students and their parents.
The SEDA has established long-term cooperation with NGOs for people with special needs, particularly “Apeirons”. The partnership has helped in addressing the key persons and developing jointly the main communication messages and tools to involve learners with special needs in VET programmes and mobility projects.

3. Preparation
The preparation phase for the mobility of learners with special needs / disabilities usually includes project coordinator’s preparation visit to the receiving organization to be sure that all conditions will be appropriate. For example, the article about Smiltene Technical School (4) outlines how the project coordinator went to the places of practice and made sure that the disabled learners would be provided with everything necessary for the success of the mobility trip. Such information encourages students and their parents.

4. Use of multipliers
Mobility projects are presented during school events in which students and teachers who have already been in a mobility programme share their experience.
_________
(1) http://www.viaa.gov.lv/library/files/original/43601_Erasmus_Plus_ikviena...
(2) http://smiltenestehnikums.lv/jaunumi/477-cela-uz-ieklaujoso-izglitibu , http://smiltenestehnikums.lv/projekti/prakse-arzemes/132-projekti/prakse...
(3) http://www.aluksniesiem.lv/vietejas-zinas/cela-uz-ieklaujoso-izglitibu-1...
(4) http://smiltenestehnikums.lv/projekti/prakse-arzemes/132-projekti/prakse...

Lithuania (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions have been taken in five dimensions.
Information and guidance
The Erasmus+ National Agency provides information and guidance, including targeted information on Erasmus+ programme for disadvantaged learners, such as, availability of additional funding and good practices from past mobility activities. Information about the possibility for disadvantaged learners to participate in Erasmus+ programme mobility activities is spread out by various means of communication: in the national Erasmus+ programme Facebook account; during information seminars and webinars; and in response to applicants’ inquiries. In 2016 an interactive on-line “Mobility guide” (1) was published which provides information on 4 areas: decision on mobility; preparation for mobility; arrival/accommodation abroad; returning home. The guide’s target audience is all young people who intend to / are currently in / have returned from mobility abroad and it will be promoted also for disadvantaged learners.
The Erasmus+ National Agency prioritises fostering of international mobility of disadvantaged learners and has organised in 2015 a special round table for representatives of VET and HE institutions - among others - to discuss the situation of mobility and the barriers to mobility of disadvantaged learners. In 2016 a deeper analysis of the mobility of disadvantaged learners has been carried out during the on-the-spot monitoring visits and system checks. The main question was about whether VET institutions have strategies for a more active inclusion of such groups of learners in the mobility activities. The purpose was also to give recommendations for information and guidance of such target group. The Erasmus+ National Agency has carried out a mini research in VET institutions in the middle of September 2016 in order to foster involvement of participants with special needs. General recommendations about the possibilities to participate in Erasmus+ programme mobility activities for learners with special needs were prepared and disseminated to VET institutions in 2017. In addition, a deeper analysis of situation about the mobilities of the learners with special needs was carried out during monitoring visits and system cheeks of VET beneficiaries. Additional questions were integrated into report forms. Moreover, information about the possibilities to participate in Erasmus+ programme mobility activities for participants with special needs or fewer opportunities was disseminated in various means of communication. The Erasmus+ National Agency took measures to improve the information and guidance for participation of learners with special needs in awarded KA1 mobility projects. After the research, the promotional postcards in Braille were produced and presented during various events organised by the NA, such as education fairs, information events, etc. Several stories of learners with special needs who have already participated in the mobility activities were posted on the Facebook account of the NA – ErasmusPlius Lietuva. Some stories were highly visible and have reached more than 6K Facebook visitors. Due to these efforts, the percentage of learners with special needs participating in mobility actions increased from 7% in 2014, to 9% in 2017.
The main responsibility for information and guidance regarding learning mobility within Erasmus+ lies with VET institutions. According to the survey of VET and HE institutions about disadvantaged learners’ mobility, VET institutions do provide targeted information for disadvantaged learners on their websites, message boards, during events with target group learners, and through individual meetings. 23 of 26 VET institutions surveyed have designated a person responsible for counselling disadvantaged learners on their mobility issues (provision of information, assistance in organising training process, in solving arising problems, etc.). In some VET institutions learners with special needs are one of the priorities during selection procedure for mobilities.
Funding
In most cases, VET institutions request and receive a support for the accompanying persons for disadvantaged learners. Support to cover exceptional costs related with organisation of Erasmus+ mobility of disadvantaged learners (e.g. working clothes, materials, etc.) is also available to VET institutions.
Motivation
According to the 2016 survey of VET and HE institutions, VET providers have a number of measures to motivate disadvantaged learners to participate in mobility projects. These include counselling and informing the target group and parents about the benefits of international mobility. The most successful measure is the best practice stories told by participants of mobility projects. Successfully employed graduates of VET institutions are encouraged to share their success stories, in which they emphasise the way the mobility experience helped them to successfully establish themselves in the labour market. Several stories of learners with special needs who have already participated in the mobility activities were posted on the Facebook account of the NA – ErasmusPlius Lietuva.
Preparation
The main role in preparing disadvantaged learners for mobility rests on VET institutions. Within the Erasmus+ programme, VET institutions are obligated to prepare learners for the practical, professional and cultural life of the host country. This requirement is established in the documents regulating the Erasmus+ programme procedure, the Erasmus+ programme guide, the Erasmus+ VET mobility quality commitment and grant agreements. Disadvantaged learners receive information about host country and host institution, logistical and linguistic support (foreign language courses, glossaries of professional terms or daily conversation phrases in a host country language), they attend targeted events where persons who already participated in mobility share their experiences and provide advice.
Involving multipliers
VET institutions use the best practice stories of previous participants and accompanying persons to motivate and to prepare disadvantage participants for mobilities. It became a tradition that after the mobility visits abroad, the learners present the seen or acquired experiences (learning methods, organisation of learning, practical training facilities, etc.) to the schools’ communities and stakeholders via open lessons, targeted events, etc. Multipliers not only present their good experience but also answer questions and address concerns from potential mobility participants. Testimonies of mobility participants are published on websites of VET institutions, social media, message boards, schools’ and regional newsletters. Several stories of learners with special needs who have already participated in the mobility activities were posted on the Facebook account of the NA – ErasmusPlius Lietuva..
Seeking to assure the quality of a mobility visit, exceptional attention during the stage of the preparation for a mobility visit is paid to the improvement of social skills of disadvantaged learners, and development of their competences, for example, such as independence and self-confidence. This process also involves psychologists, social workers, special needs teachers.
Testimonies of participants are also published on the Erasmus+ National Agency portal (2) so as to motivate not-yet mobile learners to participate in mobility abroad.
____________
(1) http://www.mobilumogidas.lt.
(2) http://www.erasmus-plius.lt

Luxembourg (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Training without borders (TWB) is a project involving different partners in France, Belgium, Luxembourg which is aimed at young people in or at risk of school dropout. The aim is to motivate young people with social and scholar difficulties by offering them an alternative valorizing training. It is a training space in the Greater region, in adequation with the real needs of the companies, in order to boost their employability and social integration. After a first year of design (2015-16), the project has opened its doors to 5 participating schools in two main sectors: construction and career. It aims to develop young people’s life skills, to secure their professional pathways with another teaching conception, based on a positive approach, work on self-confidence and competences. The training takes place in school and in a company and helps young people to develop social, transversal and specific skills regarding a specific trade. It is a training taking place before VET. The establishment of a common training scheme to the partner countries favors the recognition of certifications across the borders. After a pilot phase, the project will be extended to other sectors. From 2016-2018, a two years training phase, with 2 classes (12 pupils) in each participating country. Pupils participate in 32 weeks of training per year, of which 16 weeks in school (4 weeks of crossborder modules) and 16 weeks in a company. The programme also comprises cultural visites and exchange workshops. In June 2018 an evaluation workshop has taken place.

Malta (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
In the case of students with a disability, financial support is given and there is also the possibility, should the student want, to have an accompanying person fully funded from Erasmus+ funds.

Netherlands (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Disadvantaged learners who need extra time to meet their learning aims can be awarded funding for an extended period. Budgets to fund additional support to facilitate international mobility are also available. Actual additional costs can be declared. It is also possible to apply for subsidy to cover the costs for companions.

Norway (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions were taken in three dimensions

Information and guidance
Diku provides information on the possibility for disadvantaged learners to apply for extra funding / extra grants. The information is spread through different webpages, education exhibition, a yearly conference on internationalisation, seminars and regional / national information meetings. Diku is also available on the phone or by e-mail.
On a general level Norway has a complex system to ensure that learners with special needs are granted the same opportunities as other learners. In particular, mobility-related information and guidance tailored to specific needs is provided by:
- schools’ educational and vocational counsellors, in charge of guiding learners in all questions related to education or vocation in Norway or abroad. This service is available for all learners, including learners with special needs;
- schools’ socio-educational counsellors, who help learners with personal, social or emotional problems that affect education or training in Norway and abroad.

Funding
In Norway equal education possibilities for all learners - including those with special needs - is an important principle. In case it is necessary, additional funding is provided in order to live up to the principle. Different private trust funds offer funding for disadvantaged learners only (1). The Norwegian State Education Loan Fund offers an extra funding for disadvantaged learners and students. This fund is portable and may be used abroad.

Use of multipliers
Multipliers with mobility experience, such as teachers, mobility experienced persons and project coordinators are invited to Diku's meetings and seminars in order to inspire and motivate not yet mobile learners to become mobile through presentation of good examples and experiences. Good examples of successful mobility projects with disadvantaged learners are part of the information package.
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(1) www.legathandboken.no

Poland (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions have been taken in two directions:

1. Funding
1.1. Learners with special needs and disabilities
The rules governing the allocation of funds in Erasmus+ and ESF (especially PO WER) funded projects specifically state which measures should be undertaken to support learners with disabilities and special needs during mobility. Beneficiary institutions must adhere to these rules when organising a mobility project that includes learners with special needs. The Foundation for the Development of the Education System (FRSE), which is the Polish National Agency of the Erasmus+ Programme, refunds all actual costs directly relating to participants with disabilities (costs required for accommodating learners with disabilities, e.g. hiring additional assistance, organising special courses, providing special equipment). Additionally, the procedure for reporting such costs (accountancy) is simplified.
1.2. Learners from different ethnic/ national groups
Learners from recognised minorities (9 national minorities) benefit from regional programmes and actions regarding education and training – depending on local and regional priorities, stated e.g. in the ESF financed Regional Operational Programmes. Additionally, they can benefit from scholarships and mobility projects offered by their communities, foreign NGOs and companies. The Roma community (around 17 000 persons) has specific actions targeted to them. Its members are spread out evenly throughout Poland, mainly in cities (Roma were required to settle in the 1960s). One of the measures in the Knowledge, Education, Development Operational Programme for 2014-2020 is focused specifically on improving the education and employment of Roma people (1). While this is not focused on mobility projects, it does not preclude using funds for this purpose.

2. Preparation for mobility
Specific measures for disabled learners and special needs learners within the Erasmus+ Programme – provided that their health situation does not preclude them from travelling abroad – can include additional training and/or assistants.
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(1) Within priority axis II. Effective public policies for the labour market, the economy and education, action 2.7 Increasing the employability of people who are particularly at risk of social exclusion, 1. Comprehensive measures to improve the education and employment of members of the Roma community, as well as actions to eliminate barriers that hinder the hiring and integration of Roma to the majority population.

Portugal (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Portugal has taken actions in two dimensions, i.e. targeted information and guidance; and funding. These actions are aimed at different categories of disadvantaged IVET learners: low-skilled groups, learners from disadvantaged areas and/or communities, immigrants and learners with special needs.

Information and guidance
As regards the guidelines issued at European level and implemented in the country via the Erasmus + programme, there are specific support measures for these groups. The Erasmus+ National Agency has made particular efforts to improve mobility participation of students with special education needs (students with disabilities or learning difficulties) by establishing a course of action which includes the provision of information and guidance to institutions working in the field of special needs to enable project coordinators to foster participation in mobility projects. In order to implement this measure, the agency has created an internal working group that specifically addresses these challenges.

Funding
Applications to Erasmus+ mobility programmes from learners with disabilities, special educational needs or economic difficulties receive a supplementary scholarship, the amount of which varies, in the case of disabled applicants, according to the budget requested in the application form and the type and/or degree of disability or special need. However, its attribution also depends on the financial resources of the national agency at the time of application. Learners with economic difficulties are considered eligible if, cumulatively, they receive an Erasmus scholarship and are Social Action scholarship holders. The additional support provided to these participants covers extra costs directly related to their participation in mobility activities. People who accompany participants with a disability or special needs can receive a contribution based on actual costs. Applicants must inform schools that they have a special need and that they wish to apply for the Erasmus+ mobility grant and the supplemental scholarship.
Schools and training providers give support during the entire application process and inform the host institution that a participant with special needs has been selected to ascertain whether it gathers the requisites to receive him/her. The host institution shall ensure the necessary conditions and equipment for a successful implementation of the mobility activity. This exchange of correspondence should be part of the application.
Other sources at local, regional and/or national level can also provide additional funding for students, with special needs and staff.

Romania (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS

Slovakia (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions in support to the mobility of disadvantaged learners are covered within Erasmus+ as a consequence of regular procedures applied by the Erasmus+ National Agency (initial seminars, higher grants for disadvantaged, orientation meetings in involved schools, FAQ, assisting interested people/institutions, good practice promotion). Within these regular procedures a specific attention is given to disadvantaged IVET learners (e.g. the aforementioned higher grants for disadvantaged) as well as to schools that indicate intention to involve disadvantaged IVET learners (e.g. individual consultancy services provided by the National Agency). Also, in 2018, SAAIC implemented an initiative titled ‘Role models’ which offers individual success stories to motivate others to participate in mobility, inter alia as an opportunity to escape from the disadvantage environment trap. These success stories are placed on the Erasmus+ website and were also presented within specialised seminars aimed at disadvantaged learners and educators working with them. There are no other national programmes. There is no evidence about peculiar activities that might occur outside Erasmus+.

Slovenia (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Inclusion of students with disabilities is promoted through CMEPIUS tenders. Schools may either include special needs students into their project, or offer them targeted programmes. An assumed positive effect of including students with disabilities and immigrant students is that the mobility experience may have a particularly valuable and important impact on their self-esteem, increase their motivation for school work and contribute to a better social climate in the classroom. Individual schools include students with disabilities and immigrant students. If possible, they do not give them special treatment because it makes it easier for these students to fit into the group. In some schools they make it a point to include special needs students into every group and do not treat them as special need, they believe that such a student feels more like a part of the group this way. However, they do have accompanying personnel with them the whole time. In another school special needs student, for example with learning problems, receive more attention in the course of preparation. Sometimes even classmates step in and help. Generally speaking, special needs students are included and they are shown that mobility is possible for them too, and that it will have a positive effect on them.

Spain (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
Actions have been taken in two dimensions

Funding
Under Erasmus+ umbrella, specific funds are made available to meet the needs of people with fewer opportunities or special needs.

Information and guidance
Information is given to all the institutions to promote the inclusion of disadvantaged learners. In 2016, SEPIE also carried out special events to inform different institutions (schools, universities, other institutions from the training sector including disabled people associations) about these issues.
SEPIE has carried out different activities during 2017 to promote the participation of people with special needs. Among these activities, SEPIE has started a study in relation in 2017 about the participation of these collectives in Erasmus+. It included quantitative and qualitative statistic results. This study was designed with the collaboration of regional education authorities and some of the most important stakeholders in the field. It was complemented with interviews and visits to some institutions. These activities will enable SEPIE to create a more focused strategy to disseminate the programme and therefore increase the participation of people at a disadvantage.

Sweden (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
According to the legislation, schools have a strong role for social inclusion. Disadvantaged learners have the same rights and opportunities in education like anyone else, and schools should pay particular attention to the specific needs of disadvantaged learners and compensate for those in order to enhance inclusion. Learners with intellectual learning disabilities have a curriculum with both general and IVET-programmes that is adjusted to the intellectual capacities of these students. The curriculum for upper secondary school for students with learning disabilities stress even stronger that everyone working in school should support and stimulate the learners to ensure that they develop as much as possible. In order to do so, everyone working in school is obligated to support learners in need of particular support. This includes the responsibility of the head teacher to encourage international contacts, co-operation and exchange in education.

United Kingdom (2019)

9.1.1. DIFFERENTIATED ACTIONS TO PROVIDE DISADVANTAGED LEARNERS WITH SUPPORT TAILORED TO THEIR SPECIFIC NEEDS
The country has taken actions in three of the following dimensions.

Funding
Additional funding is available from the Erasmus+ National Agency for disadvantaged students to participate in mobility periods abroad.
Livingstone Volunteers is a scheme established by the McConnell Foundation to help provide young people from disadvantaged or vulnerable backgrounds in Scotland with the funds to partake in a volunteering placement abroad.
The Jack Kane Community Centre in Edinburgh received funding to run an Erasmus+ Youth Exchange project with partners in Italy helping young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to participate in learning opportunities across Europe, and afterwards move onto employment or further education.
UNA Exchange, based in Cardiff, Wales runs the Step by Step programme which offers supported two-week to two-month volunteer projects with partners across Europe, enabling young people with fewer opportunities to participate in life changing international volunteering projects, including short-term volunteering through the European Voluntary Service (EVS) and youth exchanges.
Through an innovative ten-week work-based football training programme, the Key Action 1 VET Vi-Ability project introduces economically inactive and unemployed people in deprived areas of Wales to the commercial management of football clubs. The project teaches participants how to run marketing, coaching and community activities. Young people will gain accredited qualifications, work experience and skills that will help them get a better job in the future and increase their general life chances. The training may include a European work placement. Vi-Ability runs projects that place individuals into two-week work placements with clubs in Spain, Germany, Italy, Sweden and Portugal. The trip introduces individuals to working practices at sports clubs abroad as well as providing an opportunity to experience other cultures.

Motivation:
Chichester College use coaching as a strategy to help students find focus and motivation. Measures include dedicated personnel that work on a one-to-one basis with students that experience barriers to learning and development. Barriers can be lack of study skills and needing help with social and financial issues which impact their ability to focus on studies. Students are encouraged through weekly meetings to find solutions to these issues and are supported to take actions to reach a resolution. The college found through the SOS Mobilities project that coaching can also be an effective tool to motivate low-achieving students to consider mobility periods.

Use of multipliers:
The UK Erasmus+ website contains case studies and quotes from former participants from disadvantaged backgrounds with mobility experience.
During Autism Awareness Week 2015 a former participant in an Erasmus+ funded volunteering project, who has been diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, urged young people in Wales to consider an Erasmus+ placement, whatever their personal circumstances.