Brief description of the context of the VET system in Slovenia

Formal vocational education and training (VET) programmes in Slovenia are generally provided by public schools. Together with private providers public schools also offer continuing VET for adults. In addition to VET programmes, the national vocational qualifications (NVQ) system governed by the Ministry of Labour has been in place since 2000. It does not provide formal education and is based on assessment processes that enable individuals to obtain formal recognition for their vocational competences. The Ministry of Education, Science and Sport (MoE) is the main body responsible for VET. lt prepares legislation for upper secondary and higher vocational education, adopts educational programmes and finances public schools. Social partners are involved in VET at all levels: preparation of vocational standards as a base for formal VET programmes; participation in council of experts for VET (consulting body for MoE); cooperation at local level in preparing 'open curricula' (employers); practical training for students.

After completing compulsory basic education, VET students can enrol in the following upper secondary programmes: technical upper secondary programmes (ISCED 3B): four-year programmes that lead to a vocational Matura (two general and two vocational-theoretical and practical exams). After passing a vocational Matura, students can enrol in higher postsecondary non-tertiary vocational education (ISCED 5B, two years) or in first-cycle tertiary professional education (ISCED 5A, three to four years). Graduates also have an opportunity to access most academic tertiary programmes, if additionally they pass one general Matura (fifth) exam; vocational upper secondary programmes (ISCED 3C): three-year labour market-oriented programmes that lead to a final exam, practical assignment and Slovenian language exams. After completion of the final exam students can access two-year vocational technical education programmes at ISCED 3B that lead to vocational Matura; short vocational upper secondary programmes (ISCED 3C) are two-year programmes that lead to a final exam. Graduates are qualified to work, for example at assistant level, or can continue their education in vocational or technical upper secondary programmes.

Public and private VET providers also offer higher vocational programmes. Graduates with vocational Matura or general Matura can enrol in two-year higher vocational programmes which cover 40% of practical training in companies. Vocational programmes for adults within the formal education system are identical to the ones designed for youth; the only difference is that provision is adjusted to suit the needs of an adult learner. The adjustments mean that the programmes can be completed in modules and exemptions to some parts of a programme may also apply. Adults can also participate in continuing vocational education and training in programmes usually provided by private companies. Regulation of provision of such programmes is not part of legislation.

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