Estonia

Brief description of the context of the VET system in Estonia

Vocational Education and Training (VET) in Estonia is a key to ensure a flexible and skilled workforce that is able to adapt to changes in the labour market. VET is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education and Research. The institutional framework includes also a network of public and private VET schools, quality assurance body, sectoral skills councils, awarding organizations, and a labour market need monitoring and forecasting system (OSKA).

Occupational standards in the eight-level Estonian Qualifications Framework are all outcome-based and they serve as the basis of VET curricula. To respond better to labour market needs the social partners are involved in VET policy development and implementation. At national level, social partners participate in sectoral skills councils, and are involved in drafting VET related legislation, including the national curricula for VET. At school level, their representatives belong to the counsellors’ boards of VET institutions. In addition to that, representatives of employers participate in accreditation of curriculum groups.  

Recognition of prior learning and work experience has improved accessibility to VET for learners of diverse educational and professional backgrounds. VET infrastructure has been renovated in recent years. Financial assistance is available for VET students to guarantee equal access to education regardless of socio-economic circumstances. VET institutions are also important providers of formal and non-formal training for adults.  

The Estonian government is responsible for development of VET strategies and implementation of state education development plans (IVET and adult education including). The Ministry of Education and Research (HTM) coordinates and leads the development of VET policy and its implementation through municipalities and other line ministries.  
The legal basis for VET development and provision is established by a number of laws. In VET in Estonia formal QA tools are established at national and VET school’s level. Estonia has developed a quality assurance model for VET based on the Common Quality Assurance Framework (CQAF). Like EQAVET circle, according to the Concept of the State Recognition in Vocational Education and Training the Estonian model for quality assurance in VET is divided in four parts: planning, implementation, evaluation / making an assessment (measuring), feed forward and feedback (adjustments).   

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Information on EQAVET indicators

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