Developing Key Competences at School in Europe, Eurydice Report

« Better adapting European education and training systems to the  needs of our economy and modern society is at the centre of  education policy debate at both national and EU level. As we  work to overcome the effects of the economic and financial  crisis, the importance of skills for growth and prosperity has  been reaffirmed. »
This cross-country report has been produced in support of the European Commission’s Communication on Rethinking Education (European Commission 2012a). The main  objective of the report is to present the findings on some of the challenges that European countries face in the implementation of the key  competences approach, and to identify problem areas and common obstacles. Based on research evidence and national practices, the report will also outline a range of measures that have the potential to effectively address these challenges.

SZAMALK Szakkozepiskola is now labeled by e-Jobs Observatory

SZAMALK Szakkozepiskola is an Hungarian school that provided ICT-related training programs from 20 years. Its training program offer has been growing ever since, which means today its provides – besides IT vocations – training programs in the field of the media, arts, economics as well as pedagogy and public transport (flight attendant courses). Since 2006 our school has been the member institution of “CISCO Academy”, so our students can attend two different CISCO courses (IT Essentials and CCNA) – this way they can take international exams in our school as well. 1200 students participate in the different training programs preparing for the labour market by acquiring up-dated competences.
The school has worked in many international projects and the developments are currently being performed. 

Why is the Label of e-Excellence important for your school ?

« Our school has won a special rank among the vocational educational institutions in Hungary not only with the help of its long traditions and experience in ICT education but with its activities in the field of methodology innovation. For the past 10 years the school has been involved in several experimental and innovation transfer projects, whose results have been used in the teaching process as well.« 


« Our school is innovative and experimental; we would like everything to be excellent. It is important for us to issue an international certificate as the only institution in Hungary. It is important that our students can find a job in other countries of Europe and that not only their certificates, but also their competences would be acknowledged. We would like our students to be able to benefit from their skills in an international level as well by providing IT English lessons. We would like to try out two pilot training courses to prove that the described job profiles meet the needs of the employers here in Hungary.« 

Green technology: how schools can cut ICT spending

Simple efficiency measures in schools’ use of technology are often all that’s needed to save energy, resources and the environment. In an effort to save up to 20% of its whole school budget over the next year, Sawtry community college has focused on technology to provide some cost-cutting solutions.
As existing hardware wears out, the Huntingdon school is planning to replace its desktop computers with thin client PCs, which function without hard drives with processing done by servers. They use less energy and consequently emit less heat, which, in a room of 30 machines, has the knock-on effect of diminishing air-conditioning costs. 

Shut down or restart?: The way forward for computing in UK schools

The report « Shut down or restart?: The way forward for computing in UK schools » is the outcome of the project « Computing in schools » initiated by the Royal Society in August 2010. The project looked at the way that computing is taught in schools, with support from 24 organisations from across the computing community including learned societies, professional bodies, universities, and industry.

The main findings and recommendations of the project are:
1. The current delivery of Computing education in many UK schools is highly unsatisfactory
2. There is a need to improve understanding in schools of the nature and scope of Computing.
3. Every child should have the opportunity to learn Computing at school, including exposure to Computer Science as a rigorous academic discipline.
4. There is a need for qualifications in aspects of Computing that are accessible at school level but are not currently taught.
5. There is a need for augmentation and coordination of current Enhancement and Enrichment activities to support the study of Computing.
6. Uptake of Computing A-level is hindered by
lack of demand from higher education institutions.

Visit the « Computing in schools » project website
Download the report
More reports on e-Jobs

French billionaires founding European School of Internet Professions

French billionaires Xavier Niel, Marc Simoncini and Jacques-Antoine are founding the European School of Internet Professions in Paris.

The three first generation Internet billionaires had a hard time finding people with the right qualifications and skills.

Therefore this privately owned school wants to train 150-200 students through a three year program in web programming, web design and other disciplines of the sector.


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Lack of educational software and support staff to foster ICT in Education

The new report “Key Data on Learning and Innovation through ICT at School” published by the European Commission examines the evolution of ICT infrastructure in schools in terms of networks, hardware and software.

The document looks at how ICT is being used in educational processes and incorporated into curricula before focusing on its role in enabling the development of innovative teaching methods. It also examines the promotion of transversal as well as job-related key competences, and the role of ICT in this process.

One of the key findings of the report shows that there is not a great disparity between schools in availability of ICT equipment but that there is still a lack of educational software and support staff. Teachers usually acquire ICT-related skills during their initial training, but further professional development is less common but needed.

Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner responsible for Education, Culture,Multilingualism and Youth indicates that “The solution to an effective use of ICT in education, however, is not technology itself. Most European countries have made significant investments over the last years with a view to ensuring universal access to ICT, with considerable success. The focus of today’s policy in the field should now move to advancing our understanding of how the new technologies are and can best be used in schools to support learning, and what are the barriers in the way of success.

Download the report

More than 10 million students use Google Apps


Google Apps for Education offers a free (and ad-free) set of customizable tools that enable faculty, staff and students to work together and learn more effectively.
Communication – Enhance your community’s dialogue with hosted email, shared calendars and integrated video chat.
Collaboration – Google Docs and Google Sites enable students and teachers to share documents online, at any time and from any location.
Customization – Easily integrate your existing IT systems with Google Apps while keeping your school’s domain safe and secure.

Apps for Universities

Leading colleges and universities use Google Apps to deliver the advanced technology students need. www.google.com/a/help/intl/en/edu/university.html

Apps for K-12 schools

Build a 21st century school by bringing Apps into the classroom. www.google.com/a/help/intl/en/edu/k12.html

Source: www.google.com/a/help/intl/en/edu/index.html

In Hungary, Google Apps for Education is used by EVK College, the student organization of Corvinus University of Budapest.

Bursting the 9 Myths of Computing Technology in Education

In a thought provoking article by Kentaro Toyama published in ICT Works, the author argues that « technology in education has a poor historical record; that computers in schools typically fail to have positive impact (with the rare exceptions occurring only in the context of competent, well-funded schools); that information technology is almost never worth its opportunity cost; and that quality education doesn’t require information technology ».
Having put forward a point-by-point refutation of frequently heard sound bites extolling technology in schools, he concludes that « underperforming school systems should keep their focus on improving teaching and administration, and that even good schools may want to consider more cost-effective alternatives to technology when making supplementary educational investments ».