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Reference Year 2019

Understanding of apprenticeships in the national context

Q2. Is there an official definition of ‘apprenticeship’ or ‘apprentice’ in your country?


Decree on vocational and educational training in small and medium sized businesses (Dekret über die Aus- und Weiterbildung im Mittelstand und in kleinen und mittleren Unternehmen vom 16. Dezember 1991)

Q3. At which level do apprenticeship schemes exist in your country?

At upper secondary level
At post-secondary (not tertiary)
At tertiary level
At sectoral level

All apprenticeship programmes are accessible at upper secondary level and post-secondary level. Dual bachelor studies at post-secondary level.

Industrial apprenticeship is provided at sectoral level, trainings organised by Forem (Arbeitsamt Ostbelgien)

Q4. How well-established are apprenticeship schemes in your country?

A long history (before 2000)
A recent history (in 2000s)
Pilot scheme

In 1992 the German Speaking community became autonomous in organising apprenticeship. Before then it was depending from the Walloon Government but already from the mid 50ies on, apprenticeship has been organised for German speaking people in Belgium.

Q5. Relevant information that is essential to understanding the specificity of apprenticeships in the country and which does not fit under the scheme specific sections below.

Although the German Speaking community was depending from the Walloon government before 1991, it has nowadays developed its own identity and concepts. This is why for Belgium it is still important to make the difference between the three language groups and their depending territories as apprenticeship schemes differ, as well as providers, duration, certifications, administration and legal framework.

In addition to the mainstream apprenticeship scheme, there is also the industrial apprenticeship scheme organised by the federations, available for only a few occupations in the food industry. Since it is not implemented at mainstream level, it is not covered by a scheme fiche in Cedefop European database of apprenticeship schemes.