Since 2017, and on their request, Cedefop has been working intensively with national authorities and stakeholders in Greece, Estonia, Bulgaria and Slovakia, to support them in strengthening their skills anticipation and matching capacities.
On 12 December 2018, Parliament adopted amendments to the Vocational educational institutions Act to link vocational programmes better with the labour market and to renew the funding principles of vocational schools. The Act also foresees more flexible ways to access vocational training and to update quality assessment. The needs of local employers and the labour force are to be taken into account to a greater extent, vocational studies are to become more flexible, and new forms of study will be piloted in cooperation with local governments.
The results of a study carried out in general education schools in spring 2018 indicate that learners and their parents prefer general over vocational education and training. Vocational education is not an attractive enough option for young people. Teachers working at general education schools also prefer learners continuing their studies at general secondary schools and universities.
Half of adult non-native speakers do not possess active language skills in Estonian. Mastering the language has a significant impact on employability, according to PIAAC data, on wages. A recent study on the quality, impact and organisation of language training showed a high demand for Estonian language training for non-native speaker adults, indicating a need to reconsider the provision of efficient and accessible training.
Initial results of the 2018 satisfaction with education survey show that nearly 70% of vocational education and training (VET) learners enjoy their studies.
Cedefop’s policy learning forum on skills anticipation gathered over 60 national stakeholders from countries participating in the agency’s country support programme and other experts in Thessaloniki on 14 and 15 June.
A unique career orientation solution developed by the Estonian Youth Work Centre, Civitta Eesti and Maru VR, presents opportunities to explore occupations in nursing and bioanalysis – fields that often suffer from a labour shortage – direct to young people and in virtual reality.
On December 21, 2017, draft legislation was approved by the government by which a new financing model for vocational education will be implemented in 2018. Financing will be provided for the activities and performance of education institutions as a whole. The present model is based on financing the number of students engaged in state-commissioned education, which means that school budgets fluctuate as students change their preferences. The present financing model also fails to ensure the work of support specialists, teaching young people who need a more individual approach, or motivating schools to perform better.
Cedefop launched a skills governance review in Estonia on 29 January. National stakeholders came together in Tallinn to learn about the project and discuss possible priorities it can address.
The interaction between vocational education and training (VET) systems and a rapidly changing world of work was the theme of Cedefop’s 4th Brussels-based seminar, organised with the cooperation of the Estonian EU Presidency on 8 December.