Development of work-based learning (WBL) in initial vocational education (VET) is a national policy priority. It started in 2013/14 as a pilot project addressing the incomplete legal framework, insufficient offer in traditionally school-based VET, and low involvement of employers, who, nevertheless, demanded improved VET quality and labour market relevance.
In 2014-17, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia cooperated in promoting WBL within a national Erasmus+ project for apprenticeship (WBL-Balt). In 2015, the Baltic alliance for apprenticeships (BAfA) was launched as part of the project. The project also raised awareness of WBL and studied existing practices with stakeholders at national level.
The legal framework for implementing WBL in Latvia was established by 2016. In 2017, the employers’ confederation launched a seven-year national ESF project to improve WBL provision. Enterprises, schools and learners will receive financial support to put the project into practice.
In 2017, a new joint Baltic initiative was also launched with the Erasmus+ project Testing new approaches to training VET and workplace tutors for work-based learning (TTT4WBL). Finland has joined the Baltic States in this project that will test a professional development model for WBL tutors: joint training for VET school and enterprise tutors.