European Commission supports pilot Vocational Education and Training mobility scheme for African countries

The results of the pilot Vocational Education and Training mobility (VET) mobility scheme for the Enlargement Countries[1] and Africa (EAC/S34/2018) have now been published. The European Commission has made available €8.5 million for two pilot projects with Africa and one with the Western Balkans in the vocational education and training (VET) sector, confirming its commitment to invest in young people, education and skills.

The Commission has made available €8.5 million for two pilot projects with Africa and one with the Western Balkans in the vocational education and training (VET) sector. Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Mariya Gabriel, said: “Africa and the Western Balkans are a political and strategic priority for the EU. We therefore have to ensure the full use of all our existing instruments and offer real opportunities to our partners. The three projects selected for the pilot Vocational Education and Training mobility scheme are concrete examples that meet the needs of both enlargement countries and Africa. We must make sure to link vocational education and training to the needs of their labour markets, specifically in sectors with high potential for job creation, such as manufacturing and agriculture.” The pilot project ‘Internationalisation of VET systems in the Western Balkans’ includes six Western Balkans partners as well as eight partners in EU Member States. The ‘joint alliance to develop a mobility scheme and share best practices between African and European VET systems (Overstep)’ involves three EU Member States and ten African countries. The ‘Supporting Alliance for African Mobility (SAAM)’ involves 32 organisations from eight EU Member States and 13 African countries. The projects are starting their activities in January 2020. More details on the selected projects can be found here: https://ec.europa.eu/education/news/vet-mobility-results

Receiving €2.5 million, Overstep is a joint alliance that aims to share best practices between African and European VET systems. The project’s mission statement includes improving teacher training, skills and pedagogical knowledge; enhancing the quality and effectiveness of curricula and training; and improving the knowledge of managerial staff. Overstep seeks to develop the technical and transversal skills that will aid learner employment, and promote collaboration between VET providers. The alliance is coordinated by the Italian organisation Glocal Srl Battipaglia and involves three EU Member States (Italy, France and Spain) and 10 African countries (Benin, Cabo Verde, Cameroon, Gabon, Kenya, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa and Tunisia).

SAAM (Supporting Alliance for African Mobility), led by the Spanish VET training centre SanViator, was awarded €4 million to coordinate 32 VET organisations across 8 EU Member States (Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Malta, Portugal and Spain) and 13 African countries (Angola, Benin, Cabo Verde, Eritrea, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan and Tunisia). Utilising an already-existing network of professional training centres, non-formal training organisations, NGOs and European umbrella organisations, SAAM aims to support the mobility of VET teachers across a range of disciplines. This alliance targets the development of new curricula, methodologies, technologies and management, as well as supports training job-shadowing and knowledge acquisition on internationalisation, transparency tools and educational pathways.

The projects are expected to start their activities as of January 2020.