Iulie 2011, Thessaloniki, Grecia ’Dissemination Event LdV/PAR/2009/RO/016'

Romanian Dissemination Visit to the CEDEFOP
Thessaloniki, 20 July, 2011

The European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP) is the European reference centre for vocational education and training(VET) whose role is to oversee the development of VET Europe-wide, to provide reference materials, information, analyses and reports of training systems, policies, research and practice. Since its establishment in 1975 the CEDEFOP has successfully directed and monitored VET through several efficient tools and an enthusiastic team of highly qualified experts.

The present efforts of the CEDEFOP, located in the context of recession, migration and different scenarios that can influence Europe’s skill demand, are geared towards reflections on VET reform in the interval 2002-2010, on the achievements of European cooperation and its impact. The changes regarding the skills needed on the European labour market are on the CEDEFOP research agenda, followed by aspects such as: developing and improving skills adapted to a new low-carbon and green economy, quality in VET systems and approaches to the improvement of training policies.
For the period 2009-2011 the objective for CEDEFOP is to contribute to excellence in VET and strengthen European cooperation in developing, implementing and evaluating European VET policy based on four priorities: informing European VET policies, interpreting European trends and challenges for skills, competences and learning, assessing VET’s benefits, and raising the profile of VET.

The Romanian visit to the CEDEFOP was undertaken with the specific aims of informing the European institution on the achievements resulting from several LLP projects, in particular the Leonardo da Vinci Accreditation of Train the Trainer course for rural tourism entrepreneurship, and find out what trends influence the VET strategies in the present global context.

The visit took place on the 20 June 2011 following a solicitation for an appointment initiated by Dr Silvia IRIMIEA. On behalf of the CEDEFOP, Ms Corinne Frey, PR expert, who received the message, organized the agenda for the one-day visit. The agenda was sent well in advance to enable the participants to prepare for the meeting.
The first meeting was chaired by Mr Zahilas Loukas, Senior expert in the area of qualifications, validation and the implementation of the EQF. Ms IRIMIEA delivered a presentation on the Leonardo LLP project Accreditation of Train the Trainer course for rural tourism entrepreneurship and presented the partners of the project. She placed a particular emphasis on the role played by Rural Tourism International-Training Network. She made several promotional materials available: posters with the Centre for Tourism Training of Cluj, flyers promoting the CTT, flyers promoting the Train the Trainer course, flyers for RTI-TN.
Dr Irimiea also spoke about the role of VET in Romania and the training provided by the Centre for Tourism Training. Ms Zahilas presented the qualifications, validations policies and an update on the implementation of the EQF, as well as future directions that project promoters should take into consideration in the current political and social environment.
The second meeting brought together Ms IRIMIEA and Ms Antje Barabasch. Ms Barabasch’s presentation was focused on learning and trainers. Her views rested on the skills needed on the labour market, on the outcomes-oriented curricula and syllabi. Ms Antja will include the RTI initiatives and trainers in the activities promoted by the CEDEFOP.
Mr Cosmin Roman, who functions as a documentarlist has provided an overview of the CEDEFOP library and promised to include the project products in the library and in the CEDEFOP data base. Two copies of the LLP pilot project book on VET in Romania were donated to the library along with the project presentation booklet A Centre for Tourism Training, published in 2006. A volume to be published jointly by the partners under the auspices of the Train the Trainer project will also be sent to the CEDEFOP for inclusion in the data base.
The talks with Ms Angela Musca rounded up the discussions on the current Train the Trainer project. Her presentation rested on working visit opportunities, which will be extremely instrumental in enhancing the development of future management skills for VET decision-makers.
All discussions revealed the increased role played by VET for the European labour market, dominated up to 90% by SMEs at the moment.  The discussions also pointed out the challenges ahead: the need to carefully balance the system-wide approaches with the implementation within subsystems, to further strengthen learning outcomes-based approaches, to develop quality assurance relevant to outcomes, to enhance the visibility of the National Qualifications Frameworks (NQFs) to end-users, individuals, and employers. Further challenges for the CEDEFOP and the European institutions are: the capacity of NQFs to validate non-formal learning and adopt credit transfer strategies, the capacity of national agencies to work out broader strategies and policies to embed NQFs, the capacity of NQFs to embrace sector and branch qualifications at national and international levels, the development of systematic monitoring and evaluation strategies, etc.

The answer provided by Mr Zahilas to the question raised by Ms Irimiea regarding how could several institutions belonging to different countries contribute to the creation or adoption of sector or branch-related qualifications frameworks, was that European associations or networks which reconcile diverse systems could agree on common approaches and work out acceptable frameworks.   
Universitatea Babeş-Bolyai, Cluj-Napoca
Leonardo da Vinci Projects
Facultatea de Geografie


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