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First steps to take European VET into the next decade

In preparation for the review of the Copenhagen Process scheduled to take place in December this year, the European Commission made its voice heard this month by proposing a new vision for the future of Vocational Education and Training (VET) in Europe. The Copenhagen Process, launched in 2002 with the aim to support EU member states in modernising their VET systems, has supported, among other things, the development of common tools such as the Europass, the European Qualifications Framework – EQF and ECVET (the equivalent of ECTS for vocational education and training), and has influenced markedly the European debates on learning outcomes and lifelong learning. 

The Communication, launched by the Commission at the beginning of June, aims to give a “new impetus for European cooperation in Vocational Education and Training to support the Europe 2020 strategy”, and outlines a number of possible ways to do this.  This initiative aims to dovetail not only with the Europe 2020 Strategy, but also with the forthcoming Youth on the Move Initiative, expected in early autumn.

As for the next steps, in December, Commissioner Vassiliou and ministers from member states with responsibilities for vocational education and training will meet with representatives of employers and trade unions in Bruges, Belgium, under the auspices of the Belgian Presidency, to set a more ambitious modernisation agenda for the coming 10 years, as well as articulate shorter-term objectives that will then be regularly reviewed.

European Commission