The European Commission has selected 295 projects from 31 countries to receive grants under the Leonardo da Vinci programme. The programme promotes trans-national cooperation to foster innovation in and improve the quality of European vocational education and training. A total of € 86 million has been awarded to co-finance the selected projects.
Ján Figel' i, European Commissioner in charge of Education and Training, said : "Since 2000, the Leonardo da Vinci programme has allocated more than 500 million euros to support some 1700 European cooperation projects. This major effort contributes to modernising our training systems and practices throughout Europe, and improves the transparency of vocational qualifications on the European employment market. In so doing, the Leonardo da Vinci programme directly helps Europe's citizens improve their skills to get a better job".
In addition to promoting trainees' mobility (see IP/05/885), the Leonardo da Vinci programme also supports innovative pilot projects covering a wide range of topics related to vocational education and training. The current batch of projects focuses in particular on the following themes:
- developing new measures and instruments to present, promote and compare qualifications and competences at European, national and sectoral level;
- developing vocational training opportunities, specifically taking into account the transparency and the transferability of the learning outcomes gained in formal education;
- ICT-supported learning, where learning based on information and communication technology is combined with other modes of learning such as learning groups, family learning or tutoring and transnational virtual study circles;
- developing appropriate training/learning materials to improve skills, also for less qualified workers;
- developing e-learning training tools for quality management in vocational education and training;
- training teachers and trainers and exchanging experience between schools, voluntary organisations, universities and companies.
The 295 projects will therefore directly contribute to the development of a well-functioning European labour market, with transparent and transferable vocational qualifications, and to the improvement of vocational training systems and practices throughout Europe.
Leonardo da Vinci projects are selected on the basis of calls for proposals. The deadline for the Call for Pre-proposals for the 2006 selection round is 30 September 2005. Contacts and general information can be found on the following web page:
The 2006 selection round will be the last in the current phase of the Leonardo da Vinci programme, which is due to end in 2006. Thereafter, vocational training activities will continue to be supported under the new Integrated Action Programme in the field of lifelong learning (2007-2013) that has been proposed by the European Commission.