Xarxa FP held its XXII General Assembly (GA) online last 11th of February gathering around 70 representatives from 35 European cities. During the General Assembly participants reviewed the results of the former strategic plan (2016-2020) and approved the new one (2021-2025), discussed new actions and projects for 2021 and welcomed three new cities: Groningen (NL), Koge (DK) and Treviso (IT). A representative from the Cities for Apprenticeships Network (Cities4Appren) was also invited to present this new initiative spearheaded by the Metropolitan City of Rome and supported by the European Commission within the framework of the European Alliance for Apprenticeship
Learning Mobility during the pandemic
2020 has been definitely marked by the COVID-19 global pandemic. Xarxa FP only could manage 39 mobilities of VET students and 17 of staff among 21 cities. The good news is that mobility was still possible during pandemic times: 5 of these mobilities were done after the COVID-19 outbreak.
Strategic Plan 2021-2025
Members approved Xarxa FP Strategic Plan for the upcoming five years. The network will in general carry on developing the same strategic priorities as in the previous plan (VET MOBILITY, VET INNOVATION & VET POLICY) but a new objective has been added: to work towards the development of international mobility for VET learners and staff beyond Europe, in line with the future Erasmus+ programme 2021-2027.
Industrial & Port VET Hub KA2 projects first products developed
The Manual of Good Practices on Industry, VET and Gender was presented to the audience as the first product developed by the Industrial VET Hub Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership coordinated by Xarxa FP. The publication collects a total of 21 good practices found by project partner organisations in Westerburg (Germany), Viborg (Denmark), Tartu (Estonia) and Barcelona (Spain).
Moreover the draft version of the Port VET Hub infographic on port companies training & skills needs was presented. The infographic is based on 160 surveys compiled among companies working in the ports of Barcelona (ES), Lisbon (PT), Ventspils (LV) and Constanta (RO) and will be published very soon at the project’s website. The Port VET Hub project is a transnational partnership to exchange best practices among these four port cities in the Mediterranean, Atlantic, Baltic and Black Seas to adapt Vocational Education Training (VET) to future trends of the port sector in Europe.
38 cities from 15 European countries (+1 observer city)
With the incorporation of Groningen (NL), Koge (DK) and Treviso (IT) Xarxa FP membership enlarges to 38 cities from 15 European countries, which confirms the sustainable growth of the association in the recent years, going from 21 member cities in 2015 to 38 in 2021.
Groningen counts with around 85.000 students of which over 10.000 are international students and 25.000 are enrolled in VET studies distributed mainly in two Colleges: the Alfa-College and Noorderpoort. Alfa-College gathers around 11.000 students, 1.100 members of staff and offers VET studies in all sectors except agriculture. Noorderpoort gathers 14.500 students, 1.400 staff members and offers 164 VET courses in maritime, arts & media, hospitality & tourism, business & technology, care & social care and more on EQF level 1 to 4. Moreover the city has applied in 2020 to become a UNESCO Learning City and is working towards introducing Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in VET.
Koge, situated 40km away from Copenhagen, hosts one of the schools of Zealand Business College (ZBC), the largest VET Institution in Denmark. Thanks to its partnership with Campus Koge, the municipal educational melting pot of youth, secondary, vocational and higher educations, ZBC will run the mobility actions and projects of Koge within Xarxa FP. ZBC offers more than 40 VET educations, gathering 6.400 students and around 1.000 teachers and staff. Every year ZBC hosts around 250 international students and sends around 200 students and staff.
Treviso is a city in the Veneto region in the northern part of Italy with a population of around 86.000 inhabitants. It hosts one of the vocational training schools of the Lepido Rocco Foundation. Founded in 1905, the Vocational Training Centre “Lepido Rocco” offers four-year vocational training courses (III and IV EQF level) as well as retraining and specialization courses for adults. In particular, Lepido Rocco vocational training centre works in the following sectors:
- Mechanical and Automotive
- Electricity and Electronics
- ICT and Telecommunications
- Tourism and catering
- Web Marketing & Sales
- Health care
Moreover two representatives from the Training Centre Somorrostro in Muskiz (Bask Country, Spain) attended the General Assembly as observers.
Espoo (FI) elected as a new member of the Executive Committee
The city of Espoo (FI) was elected as a new member of the Executive Committee, replacing the city of Berlin (DE). Ms Päivi Korhonen, Director of Communication and Marketing at OMNIA, will represent the second largest Finnish city at the Committee. Moreover, Alcoi (ES), Munich (DE), Toulouse (FR) and Rome (IT) were re-elected for four more years’ mandate.
Online networking at the Mobility Managers’ meeting
45 Mobility Managers representing 35 cities took part in the online networking meeting in the afternoon. They took stock of the results of the users’ survey which evaluates our services in order to improve the management of mobility actions according to ISO 9001 quality standards and work in small groups in order to increase cooperation with other members.