Europe is growing together and as a result new opportunities rise with increased productivity, growth, cultural diversity, innovations, new markets and products. But the European Union is still characterised by labour market barriers which are affecting cross-border labour market mobility and the EU-principle of the freedom of movement of labour and establishment.

Objective of the Baltic Education Project

One reason for the imperfect cross-border labour mobility is the lack of the mutual recognition of vocational education and training. In order to address this shortcoming of EU institutional agreements the Hanseatic Parliament has introduced the project "Baltic Education". Objective is to develop, implement and achieve a system of mutual recognition of vocational education and training. This will be done by the implementation of the European Credit Transfer System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET). This approach will be tested through the pilot project, co-financed by the European Union within the Leonardo da Vinci programme.

System of Mutual Recognition of Vocational Education and Training

Four partners from Gdansk, Hamburg, Pori and Vilnius participating in the pilot project chose the profession "painter" as an example for the testing phase. National vocational frameworks of the profession "painter are used for the developing of units. The objective of this developing phase is to separate the four vocational frameworks for the profession "painter" into operational, transparent and comparable units. Afterwards the units will be quantified with credit points. This will be done by the criteria expenditure of time and outcome. On the foundation of this quantification with credit points for the testing of the profession "painter" a system shall be developed of mutual recognition of vocational graduation and qualification. Finally, this developed system is meant to be integrated in the EU qualification passport Europass.

9 Baltic Sea Regions will participate by end of 2007

The project is divided in two phases. In the first project phase the four regions Gdansk, Hamburg, Vilnius und Pori intensify their co-operation and partnership through the participating chambers and public authorities. The practical use of the developed ECVET System for the profession "painter" will be tested in the four regions by mid of November 2007. The second test phase enfolds Baltic Sea Regions in Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Sweden and Norway. Here it contains a continuation and assignment of the results to all members of the Hanseatic Parliament. The second project phase is starting in November 2007 and is ending in February 2008.

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