EUproVET (European Providers of Vocational Education and Training)
The primary role of EUproVET is as a policy advocacy group which seeks to influence EU draft policy, conduct dialogue with the European Commission, promote transnational cooperation between members and promote, inter alia, vocational education and training as major force to sustain economic growth.
Education and training are at the core in reaching the aims of the Europe 2020 Growth Strategy. The reform agenda outlined in the document aims to assist Europe to overcome the financial crisis and come out stronger through a strategy for inclusive, smart and sustainable growth.
ETBI (IVEA) retained its membership in EUproVET for 2012/13, despite EC funding support for the project, under the Leonardo da Vinci Lifelong Learning Programme, running out in 2011. It was felt that it was important to maintain the links that had been established by EUproVET with European Commission officials, particularly while the Commission was in the process of drawing up a proposal on the EU programme for education, youth and sport for 2014-20, to replace the Lifelong Learning Programme which ends in 2013.
In November 2011, the European Commission proposed a new programme called Erasmus+ to replace the existing Lifelong Learning Programme, bringing together all the current EU and international schemes for education, training, youth and sport, and replacing seven existing programmes with a single programme. This is intended to increase efficiency, make it easier to apply for grants, and reduce duplication and fragmentation.
In October 2012, IVEA and our EUproVET partners drafted a number of comments and suggestions for amendments to the proposals, and submitted them to each partner’s national MEPs on the CULT (Culture and Education) Committee. Every amendment proposed by EUproVET was supported by the MEPs, and most were included in the final document, which was agreed in mid-2013 by the European Council (27 Member States) and the European Parliament. It is due to start in 2014.
Under the Erasmus+ programme, up to five million people, almost twice as many as now, will get the chance to study or train abroad with European financial assistance. Among them will be nearly three million higher education and vocational students.
Other aims of the Erasmus+ programme include supporting Member States and partner countries in modernising their education and vocational training systems, enhancing teaching quality in the EU and beyond, supporting teaching and research on European integration, promoting youth participation in society, and supporting European grass-roots sport.
ETBI (IVEA) is pleased to have contributed to the development of the Erasmus+ programme through its membership of EUproVET, and hopes to continue our association with our fellow member VET associations across Europe.