EURO-PROF which had its constitutional meeting in November 2009, is taking action to improve the situation of national schools and institutions for vocational education by promoting transnational cooperation.
Established as a top-organisation for the schools and institutions of Austria, Germany and Switzerland, its representatives took part in the working conference of the ‘Bundesarbeitskreis Fachschulen Technik’ (BAKFST – Working Group of Technical Colleges) in Ingolstadt, Germany in March 2010. The participants to the conference declared their interest in the objectives of EURO-PROF, will cooperate closely and are discussing to join.
At the moment, the most important issue is the rating of the institutes according to the respective National Qualification Frameworks and the soon-to-be revised scale of the International Standards on Classification of Education (ISCED). It was agreed that the graduates, having fulfilled all requirements of education, training and workplace practice, should be granted level 6 of EQF (and corresponding national level) and level 5 of ISCED. This would certainly be justified by the knowledge, skills and competences of these engineers and technicians, their vocational achievements giving proof to it, day by day.
Following that conference, representatives of governments, the economy and the industry were contacted to promote this issue. The impression is that awareness could be raised positively.
Late in spring, the ‘Swiss Conference of Höhere Fachschulen’ (Professional Colleges) accepted and positioned EURO-PROF as their platform for international affairs. In due course, contacts were made with the Bundesamt für Bildung und Technologie (BBT - Federal Office for Professional Education and Technology) to intensify and coordinate international cooperation on the afore mentioned issues.
In Austria, contacts were made to the Ministry for Education, Arts and Culture – BMUKK (which was well represented at the constitutional meeting) to initiate a meeting of Austrian and Swiss ministry representatives.
Werner Wöhr, the German EURO-PROF vice-president, contacted Professor Georg Spöttl, chairman of the working group Elektro/Metall for the German Qualification Framework (DQR) to talk about justifiable ratings and EURO-PROF´s position was well considered.
In September 2010, EURO-PROF´s annual general assembly took place in Bregenz (Austria), where strategy and focuses for the next year have been laid out.
Appointments have been made to meet MEPs in Strasburg in February to discuss measures to improve the recognition of engineers and technicians throughout Europe.