“We cannot expect creative and resourceful youngsters, able to cope with the crisis and the difficulties in the labour market and globalization, if the school and the educational institutions (including (…) organizations of the civil society) do not have the objective to prepare an appropriate culture, encouraging risk-taking, creativity and innovation.” An effective method of approach between school and the world of work is certainly represented by the new dimension of the simulated activities consistent with the most recent policies implemented by the EU and in harmony with the scenario that emerges from the reorganization of the secondary school system. It is now widely shared the view that it is through the use of new teaching strategies (simulations , problem- solving, laboratory teaching, working in groups, experiences abroad, etc …) that you can better and more effectively meet the orientation needs of young people, through the comparison with relevant stakeholders and the dissemination of an entrepreneurial culture.
The entrepreneurial mind-set that helps to turn ideas into action is definitely a skill that significantly increases the possibility of entering the labour market. (‘ET 2020′) (2009 / C 119 /02 ) 14. Furthermore, the Strategic Framework for European cooperation in education and training (ET 2020) sets as an objective the development of “innovation-friendly institutions” – promoting creativity and innovation by developing specific teaching and learning methods including the use of new ICT tools and teacher training.
The main players in these scenarios of change are definitely the teachers who need to be put in the position of promoting entrepreneurial skills among the students through new and creative ways of teaching and transversal learning. The experience of the real world, directly connected to the work, through “problem-based” learning should be include in all disciplines. (Commission, Entrep. Edu: A Guide for Educators, 2013).
Therefore, if we wish to overcome the huge youth unemployment in Europe, we should provide the students with the right skills: “In cooperation with the relevant stakeholders we must regularly review occupational and education/training standards which define what is to be expected from the holder of a certificate or diploma. This means closer collaboration between stakeholders active in skills anticipation including representatives of professional sectors, social partners, relevant civil society organisations, and education and training providers.” (The Brugges Communiqué). This is what this partnership is about: 2 VET schools, 2 Secondary Schools, 1 Company and 1 Foundation got together to give their contribution to European 2020 Strategy aim to raise to 75% the employment rate between 20 to 64 yo. Consider that in 2013 these were the less than 25 yo unemployment rates at the partner countries and we can all conclude that action is needed: EU – 23.4%; Greece – 58.6%; Croatia – 49.8%; Italy – 40%; Netherlands – 11%; Portugal 37.7%, Turkey 17% (Eurostat).
We will develop entrepreneurial skills using online tools for both hard and soft skills. Not only students will be involved, but teachers will be so as well. The course and its materials that will be created, the workshops conclusions, the virtual companies online competition will be incorporated at partners teaching and training regular activities, so that other could benefit.
The main objectives are:
- To help students create their own business by taking full informed responsibility for the decisions and respecting ecology, regional identity but global market.
- To promote European business cooperation and competition by creating international mixed groups of students in each virtual company.
- To give students practical skills about how companies are managed.
- To provide knowledge of national and European markets.
- To motivate pupils to search for work in Europe.
- To promote intercultural understanding and awareness.
- To promote European Citizenship.
These objectives match the European objectives at a macro level, because they relate to the Europe 2020 Strategy ones: employment, innovation, education. Regarding the Communiqué, this project develops partnerships between education and business, locally, regionally and internationally. It also develops innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship, as well as the use of ICT.
Disclaimer: This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication (communication) reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.