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LCAES:Leonardo da Vinci Partnership

LCAES:Leonardo da Vinci Partnership
Date: 06 Feb 2012
The inaugural meeting for a European project on the recognition of prior learning (RPL) in vocational education and training (VET) was recently co-hosted by Mary Immaculate College and Limerick City Adult Education Service on the 19th and 20th January. The project aims to compare VET systems in partner countries, share knowledge on the use of RPL and prepare documentation on a range of issues, including the potential of ECVET (European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training) for supporting RPL.
The first part of the two-day meeting was chaired by Cathal de Paor, Mary Immaculate College and RIPLVET project co-ordinator, and included discussions on vocational education teacher education systems in each of the partner countries. An afternoon session on project planning was facilitated by members of the Limerick City Adult Education Service Development Team.
On Friday, the meeting was hosted in LCAES O’Connell Avenue, where the group met teachers and learners from the VTOS, Youthreach, BES and Upskill Solutions, as well as visiting the Self Access Centre and Adult Education Information and Guidance Service.  Speaking at the concluding session, Mary Hamilton, Adult Education Officer, Limerick City Adult Education Service noted that as an employer and manager of VET service provision, staff development was of special interest and relevance for their work: ‘We look forward to learning more about staff development policies in vocational education among the various countries in the consortium. There are many developments underway in vocational education and training provision in Ireland which makes this project very timely for us.’
At the conclusion, the group was treated to freshly baked produce from the Youthreach Food Technology and Catering class before starting to depart for home. Work is now underway on planning for the next phase in the project, which will be hosted by the Oslo and Akershus University of Applied Sciences later in the year. The project is funded as part of the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme.
Members attended from the following institutions: Mary Immaculate College, City of Limerick Vocational Education Committee, University of Stirling, Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences, FLORIFORM-Formation Fleuriste, and Gazi University, Turkey. Over thirty staff members representing various partners attended activities over the two-day event as part of the business and social programme.