On 30 November 2016, the European Commission presented the Clean Energy for all Europeans package, which aims at boosting clean energy transition in Europe.
The transition towards a decarbonised economy is not only a necessary response to the threat of climate change, it is also a great opportunity – in terms of generating growth, investment and jobs.
In the construction sector, in the context of energy efficiency investment, the transition is expected to be a major source of both low-skilled and high-skilled jobs, and there will be a demand for new competences at both the design and construction stages.
In this landscape, it is fundamental that we identify common approaches and standards through which we can recognise these skills, and support the mobility of workers across Europe.
Bricks of Skills is a partnership project, co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union, that brings together partners from six countries to address these issues. Running from 2018 to 2021, the project partners are working towards the aims and objectives set out below.
Natural | Sustainable Materials
Future of Construction
Modern | Eco Friendly
Future of Construction
Develop flexible learning pathways focused on energy efficiency which can modernise, reward and resource the education and training of people for competitive and innovative solutions in Europe.
Design EU recognised and standardised qualification pathways in accordance with the ECVET model, with the aim to overcome the fragmentation of construction professions and facilitate free movement of construction professionals in the EU.
Favour a cross-cutting understanding of the different trades in the construction sector through the flexibility of blended Learning Outcomes which are transferable and applicable to the different qualifications.
Enable learners to build a qualification at their own pace from learning outcomes acquired in their own country and abroad.
The first step towards achieving the objectives has been a joint design of Units of Learning Outcomes (ULOs), which are conceived as “learning bricks” meant to enable beneficiaries of construction training / education paths to gain knowledge, skills and competences in the field of Energy Efficiency and connected to the qualifications targeted (EQF 4-5 level).
Bricks of Skills partners have developed 5 Bricks of Skills Units of Learning Outcomes translated in all the partnership languages
The Bricks of Skills partners piloted the delivery and assessment of the designed Energy Skills ULOs with 12 trainers drawn all partners at a Joint Staff Training Learning Activity in January 2020 just prior to the onset of Covid. Once back to their home countries these trainers transferred their knowledge to their colleagues thus replicating the impact of the LA.
A further Learning Activity of a Blended Mobility of VET Learners was first postponed and then cancelled due to the pandemic but replaced by in-country piloting which had the benefit of reaching more participants across the partnership than originally planned.
Partners have committed to sign a BoS “Memorandum of Understanding” and a “Learning Agreement”, which ensures that the qualifications achieved at one institution will be accepted at the other. For the time being, this is an pilot aimed at demonstrating that the approach can work. We need however a strong commitment from the qualification bodies in each country to make it happen on a wider and regular scale. If students could get their training abroad certified and recognised by their home institution, they would be more motivated to try to complete their training paths abroad and the training institution would greatly increase its attractiveness. This would be a real incentive to undertake vocational learning paths abroad. Improved mobility means that, following a placement abroad, learners come back with a certificate which is recognised in their own training system or learning context.
This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.