2.9 Skills recognition
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The recognition of skills acquired through participation in voluntary activities is specified in the grand-ducal regulation of 9 January 2009 on Youth (règlement grand-ducal du 9 janvier 2009 sur la jeunesse).
The National Youth Service is in charge of the recognition procedure. Furthermore, the grand-ducal regulation of 11 January 2010 (règlement grand-ducal du 11 janvier 2010 portant organisation de la validation des acquis de l'expérience pour la délivrance des brevets, diplômes et certificats prévue au chapitre V de la loi du 19 décembre 2008 portant réforme de la formation professionnelle) defines the procedure of the validation of non-formal and informal learning (Validation des acquis de l'expérience – VAE).
According to the grand-ducal regulation of 9 January 2009 on Youth (règlement grand-ducal du 9 janvier 2009 sur la jeunesse), young people who have participated in voluntary activities and who fulfil certain criteria are eligible to receive a certification of engagement (attestation de l'engagement).
To be considered for this certification, young volunteers under the age of 30 years must have completed either a minimum of 400 hours in a project or a minimum of 3 months in a voluntary service programme. Furthermore, young people who participated in a training session of at least 150 hours are also eligible.
According to the law, the certificate must include the date and duration of the volunteering commitment, the type of engagement, the tasks performed by the young volunteer, the description of achieved qualifications and a general statement describing the type of training. The certificate is signed by the minister in charge of youth policy.
An attestation committee (commission d'attestation) has been introduced by law. Its role is:
- To advise the minister in charge of youth policy about the recognition of volunteer experience
- To contribute to the development and evaluation of the recognition mechanism of volunteer experience
- To make proposals concerning the training and promotion relating to the recognition mechanism of volunteer experience.
The composition of the 12-member committee is determined by the grand-ducal regulation of 9 January 2009 on Youth (règlement grand-ducal du 9 janvier 2009 sur la jeunesse).
In 2019, a total of 362 certifications of engagement have been issued (MENJE 2020, p. 99).
The grand-ducal regulation of 11 January 2010 (règlement grand-ducal du 11 janvier 2010 portant organisation de la validation des acquis de l'expérience pour la délivrance des brevets, diplômes et certificats prévue au chapitre V de la loi du 19 décembre 2008 portant réforme de la formation professionnelle) defines the validation of non-formal and informal learning (VAE; Validation des acquis de l'expérience) and offers an additional means of access to diplomas. The VAE enables individuals to obtain all or part of an educational degree (e.g. a Secondary Technical Education Diploma, a Master Craftsman qualification, a Higher Technician Certificate or a University Diploma).
The VAE is applicable to everyone, regardless of age, level of study or professional status. The prerequisite is a minimum of 3 years or 5 000 hours (continuous or not) of paid, unpaid or voluntary work that is directly related to the requested certification.
The applicant must compile a portfolio of their experience and submit it to a validation committee or a qualified panel. The portfolio should provide details of the knowledge, competencies and skills that have been acquired and are directly related to the certification; it should include concrete examples of tasks that have been performed by the applicant. After an interview with the applicant, the committee (or panel) makes its decision based on the portfolio provided. The decision of the validation committee or panel can lead to the following scenarios concerning the applicant's request: no validation, partial validation or full validation.
Certificates, diplomas and qualifications obtained through VAE are equivalent to certificates, diplomas and qualifications obtained through other traditional methods and certificate holders are awarded the same entitlements.
In Luxembourg, the Youthpass is another certification tool. It was introduced to improve the recognition of skills attained by participants in voluntary activities performed through the Erasmus+ Youth in Action programme. It consists of (1) Certificates that can be obtained by participants of several actions and sub-actions of the Youth in Action programme (2) A defined process which supports young people, youth workers and youth organisations to reflect about the learning outcomes from a Youth in Action project.
Youthpass is also part of a broader European Commission strategy to improve the recognition of non-formal and informal learning and of youth work in Europe and beyond, to facilitate a better match between skills and labour demand, to promote the transferability of skills between companies and sectors and to help citizens move around the EU to study and work.
(see: Youthpass Impact Study)
Europass is a portfolio of skills recognised and used in 35 countries throughout Europe (including Luxembourg). It is a set of online tools and documents which helps users to manage their academic and professional career. It makes it possible for anyone to have their skills and qualifications clearly understood, whether by an employer, a training body or a teaching establishment, anywhere in Europe.
Europass is a unique reference tool that helps:
- Citizens communicate and prove their skills and qualifications more effectively when job-hunting or applying for training
- Employers understand the skills and qualifications of jobseekers and hence of their future employees
- Education and training authorities to provide information on the content of their curricula, promote their training offer on a European scale, and highlight the skills connected with their diplomas.