Swiss Support for the introduction of the Dual-track principles in Bulgaria Vocational Education system


This project pursues a sustainable Bulgarian system of professional school education in which vocational education is tightly linked to the demand of the business. It is a vision, in which vocational schools are generating competent, knowledgeable and highly qualified workforce, able to respond to the immediate needs of the labor market and where companies are seen as responsible partners to the educational institutions. Dual Vocational Education and Training System (DVETS) is considered as one of the operational tools and entry point for the accomplishment of this vision.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Bulgaria
Promoting economic growth and improving working conditions
VocationalTraining
Vocational training
01.12.2014 - 30.11.2019
CHF 2'701'930
Background

In the framework of the Swiss-Bulgarian Cooperation Pro-gramme (SBCP), the Bulgarian government has expressed the interest of using the Swiss experience and know-how to reform the Professional Education system in Bulgaria by introducing a Dual-track mechanism combining general and theoretical education (in school) and practical training (on the job). During the second annual meeting of the Programme (14.03.2013) both Swiss and Bulgarian parties agreed to dedicate part of the remaining under the programme funds to support such a programme. In this context, experts from the Swiss Institute for Vocational Education and Training (SFIVET) supported by a Bulgarian consultant were contracted by SDC to carry out a feasibility study and consequently draft a Project Outline. The main rationale behind this project is to make use of the Swiss experience in the context of Professional Education in order to build a system which is fit for Bulgaria and offers the same advantages as the Swiss Dual Education System.

Objectives

This project will endeavor a sustainable Bulgarian system of professional school education, in which vocational education is tightly linked to the demand of the business. Its goal is to create a replicable model and the respective capacity for implementing the DVETS in Bulgaria, while specific objectives as follows:

  • Pilot a new approach in the development of curricula and syllabi in the VET system
  • Practical implementation of the curricula in a complete educational cycle in a number of professions
  • Building capacity for disseminating the DVETS in Bulgaria
  • Supporting legislative changes for the implementation of the DVETS in Bulgaria
  • Promote a positive public image of the project and the VET in general
Target groups

Vocational teachers and in-structors, state educational experts and pupils.

Results

Achieved results:  

  • 32 vocational schools in 19 Bulgarian cities in 14 administrative regions joined the project, offering dual vocational education with the support of DOMINO. A total of 1600 students enrolled in the 12 newly developed curricula. 
  • A total of 170 enterprises are partners to the participating schools, of which 81% Bulgarian companies while 19% being foreign investors in the country (with about 5% Swiss companies).
  • The amended Ordinance for dual vocational training (DVET) approved by Parliament in 2018.  
  • The newly established National Consultative Council on VET (3 ministries, private sector, school representatives) is continuing the work started in the frame of the DOMINO-initiated Forum on Dual Education, where all stakeholders are involved to make consensus-based recommendations for the ongoing reform in the vocational training. 
  • The National Agency for Vocational Education and Training (NAVET) continued using the qualification profiles developed within the project to update the State Standards for professions targeted by the project. 
  • 93 graduated DVET students since the beginning of the project and 70% of them got an employment with the DOMINO companies which hosted their apprenticeship.
  • New curricula developed with project's support in 12 professions are approved by the Ministy of Education as a national standard and offered. ^
  • Know-how transfer/exchange with Swiss experts (SFIVET) enhanced the capacity of locally-trained experts in dual education (DTEs) who gradually took over project activities trainings. 
  • A total of 255 instructors from the partner companies and 112 teachers have been trained by SFIVET experts and Bulgarian DTEs to work according the dual education curricula and principles.


Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Swiss Contribution to the enlarged EU
Project partners Contract partner
Foreign state institution
  • National State Institute North


Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF   2'701'930 Swiss disbursement to date CHF   2'109'527
Project phases Phase 1 01.12.2014 - 30.11.2019   (Current phase)