The member countries of the European Union have begun to implement educational laws that adapt vocational training to the new guidelines in order to achieve the objectives proposed by Europe. The European Commission has made vocational training a cornerstone of the common policy. In this regard, the Committee on the Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European Social Fund Plus in Council Recommendation 2020/C417/01 specifies that it seeks to “ensure better matching of education and training systems to the labour market and equal access to lifelong learning opportunities for all, through upskilling and retraining pathways.”
THE NEW VOCATIONAL TRAINING MODEL IN SPAIN
In 2022, the new Organic Law 3/2022, of 31 March, on the organisation and integration of Vocational Training for the modernisation of Vocational Training in Spain was approved with the aim of improving standards and making VET more attractive to young people. All this, through the introduction of flexible learning pathways, as well as the updating and development of new educational programs that meet the demands of the future of the labor market. The new VET model seeks to ensure learning opportunities for all with a unified, flexible and easily accessible system.
Main features of the new VET model
It defines and regulates training offers.
All vocational training will have a dual character.
It promotes the accreditation of competences acquired through work experience, as well as through non-formal channels.
It creates and regulates the vocational guidance system linked to VET.
It integrates innovation, research, digitalization, sustainability and entrepreneurship into VET.
It promotes and incorporates the internationalization of Vocational Training.
It strengthens the collective responsibility between educational centers and companies in training.
It intensifies the link between Vocational Training and University.
THE DUAL CHARACTER
With the new law, the entire training offer will have a dual character. That is, the training cycles will combine the stay in the educational center with compulsory internships in companies. During the period in the company, the students, who will have both a tutor from the company and the educational center, will acquire professional skills from their training cycle, become familiar with the work environment and acquire key skills for access to the labor market. As for access to training in the company, it will be necessary to be at the age of 16 and have completed and passed training in occupational risk prevention.
Depending on the characteristics of the training period in the company (duration, significance of the training and status of the trainee), the dual character will have two intensities:
GENERAL DUAL CHARACTER
Students will have an internship in the company between 25% and 35% of the total duration of the training. In this case, the company will assume up to 20% of the content and learning outcomes. Under this scheme there is no training contract with the company.
INTENSIVE DUAL CHARACTER
Students will have an internship in the company between 35% and 50% of the total duration of the training. In this case, the company will assume up to 30% of the content and learning outcomes. Unlike the previous case, in the intensive training regime there is a training contract with the company.
MODULAR EDUCATIONAL OFFER
The new Law establishes a flexible and modular offer divided into 5 ascending grades, in which there will be offers linked to 3 levels. In this way, students will have the possibility to configure their own itinerary. The first three grades (A, B, C) are aimed at those who have work experience in a certain sector, but do not have any qualification that accredits it.
This degree includes the most basic training offers that allow obtaining a partial accreditation of competence that will include one or more elements of competences of a professional module. Access to this degree has no academic or professional requirements.
This allows students to obtain the Certificate of Professional Competence. Like grade A, it does not require academic or professional requirements. The certificate may be obtained either by passing the training, or by obtaining all the partial accreditations of competence of the corresponding Grade A.
This grade allows to obtain the Professional Certificate through the training of several professional modules. Students will obtain this certificate both by passing the training and by obtaining all the corresponding Grade B certificates. The courses of this degree will include a period of training in the company.
This grade includes the Basic, Middle and Higher Level Training Vocational training. In terms of duration, the basic vocational training will last 2 years, while the middle and upper grades will last 2 or 3 years depending on the vocational training. During this time, in-company training will be included in the Middle and Higher grades, while the basic only includes it in specific cases.
It includes specialization courses that allow students to specialize in a specific field of the vocational training sector that they have completed and passed. In the case of students who successfully complete and pass a Middle Grade specialization course, they will obtain the title of Specialist of the corresponding profile. In the case of the Higher Degree, they will obtain a Master’s degree in Vocational Training.