6.5 Cross-border learning mobility
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One of the objectives of the National Programme for Youth 2013-2022 (Resolucija o Nacionalnem programu za mladino 2013-2022) is to increase the international mobility of young people in Slovenia. The Ministry of Education, Science and Sport wants to stimulate the Slovenian students towards mobility. Thus, the ministry has been implementing the project "Mobility of students from socially weaker environments" since 2016 (see the National Programme for Youth 2013-2022). This programme co-finances additional monthly allowances for students from socially-disadvantaged backgrounds through the funds from the European Social Fund and through the Erasmus programme. In the academic year 2016/17, funds incentivizing students from socially weaker environments were available in the amount of the monthly allowance of 270 EUR. This was paid to the student entirely before leaving for international mobility. In 2016, the incentive for the socially weak was paid out to 432 beneficiary students in higher education. In 2017, the montly allowance of 250 EUR was paid out to 515 beneficiary students in higher education. In 2018, the monthly allowance of 200-220 EUR was paid out to 541 beneficiary students and in 2019, the monthly allowance of 200 EUR was paid out to 672 beneficiary students.
Basic orientations of international co-operation in education are laid out in the White Paper on Education in the Republic of Slovenia (Bela knjiga o vzgoji in izobraževanju v Republiki Sloveniji). This conceptual guideline underlies all substantive changes in the country's education system in recent years and is largely based on European dimensions, such as the common European heritage of political, cultural and moral values reflected in human rights, the rule of law, pluralistic democracy, tolerance, solidarity and intercultural education.
The legislation on education also defines basic aspects of the international dimension.
The Organisation and Financing of Education Act (Zakon o organizaciji in financiranju vzgoje in izobraževanja) states that enabling participation in European integration processes is one of the basic goals of the Slovene education system and one of the priorities of its further development (see Article 2).
The internationalization of higher education was one of the priorities of the Resolution on National programme of higher education for the 2011-2020 time period (Resolucija o Nacionalnem programu visokega šolstva 2011–2020). Subsection 2.6 claims internationalization is of crucial importance for further development of higher education area. The new Resolution on National programme of higher education 2021-2030 is still under preparation. The internationalization of higher education remains one of the priorities of the new programme proposal.
As noted in the Mobility Scoreboard, sub-section 1.1.5, Actions for improving the Provision of Information and Guidance on International Learning Mobility for IVET Learners, Resolution on the National Programme for Youth 2013-2022 (Resolucija o Nacionalnem programu za mladino 2013-2022) youth mobility is a priority area, with a focus on strengthening the quality, promotion and support for studies and practical training abroad.
Moreover, we should note there is also an overarching strategy to promote mobility at tertiary level (Strategy of Internationalisation of Higher Education; Strategija internacionalizacije slovenskega visokega šolstva 2016–2020). The strategy emphasizes the importance of developing global relations with the world, especially with Slovenia being a small country. Strategies also aim at establishing Slovenia as and international centre of knowledge. The strategy is backed up by the action plan for 2016-2018 (Akcijski načrt 2016-2018) and Action plan for 2018-2020 (Akcijski načrt 2018-2020).
Non-governmental actor, the National Youth Council of Slovenia adopted the Programme document for the mobility of young people (Policy paper on Youth Mobility).
Mobility of pupils in Slovenia is mainly enabled within the framework of the EU Programme Erasmus+. This is coordinated and performed by the national agency The Centre of the Republic of Slovenia for Mobility and European Educational and Training Programmes (CMEPIUS). The framework of the programme coordinates pupils and students in a variety of sub-programme activity. These include the Comenius and Leonardo da Vinci initiatives. The EU Programme Erasmus+ offers financially support for non-formal learning and mobility of young people (from 13 to 30 years) which contributes to the goals of European cooperation in the area of the young. The national agency Institute for the Development of Youth Mobility (MOVIT) implements the Programme in Slovenia.
Slovenia is a founding member of the CEEPUS programme – Central European Exchange Programme for University Studies. The fundamental principles of the CEEPUS exchange programme and its contents are similar to the European Community programme. The programme enables equal partnerships between members and their university networks, and scholarships contribute to the EU’s objective of increasing mobility.
Bilateral cooperation between Slovenia and European and non-European countries is defined in bilateral agreements, programmes and protocols on cooperation in education, science and culture.
Four programmes are available for young people to consider when pursuing cross-border mobility in formal education:
- Co-shaping the European Higher Education Area (aims to finance CEEPUS and bilateral agreement exchanges; supports mobility of Higher Education staff and students),
- Public tender for financing mobility of students from socially weaker backgrounds (Ministrstvo za izobraževanje, znanost in šport),
- Ad Futura programmes for international mobility (Štipendije Ad Futura za izobraževanje),
- Learning Network on Transnational Mobility Measures for Disadvantaged Youth and Young Adults (TLN Mobility).
For all the above programmes, approximately a budget of 5.4 million euros is provided.
In the context of non-formal learning, there are no incentives or actions by top level authorities to support cross-border mobility. However, in the field of youth work, Action Plan of a Resolution on the National Programme for Youth 2013-2022 for 2016/2017 (Izvedbeni načrt Resolucije o Nacionalnem programu za mladino 2013–2022 za leti 2016 in 2017), 2018/2019 (Izvedbeni načrt Resolucije o Nacionalem programu za mladino 2013-2022 za leti 2018 in 2019) and 2020/2021 (Izvedbeni načrt Resolucije o Nacionalnem programu za mladino 2013-2022 za leti 2020 in 2021) has this specific aim in the field: Promoting inclusion in international youth work and learning mobility in youth work and strengthening them. Two measures are provided in order to reach this goal: Erasmus+ Key Action 1 (Mobility projects for young people and youth workers) and Erasmus+ Key Action 2 (Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices). The Erasmus+ programme finances both measures.
The Programme Erasmus+ has quality assurance built into the application process and other activities carried out during the implementation of projects (e.g. relevance of the project, quality of project design, impact and dissemination). There is no other quality assurance system.