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Portugal:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

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Overview Portugal

Contents

Portugal:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Portugal:Historical Development

Portugal:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Portugal:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Portugal:Political and Economic Situation

Portugal:Organisation and Governance

Portugal:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Portugal:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Portugal:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Portugal:Organisation of Private Education

Portugal:National Qualifications Framework

Portugal:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Portugal:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Portugal:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Portugal:Funding in Education

Portugal:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Portugal:Higher Education Funding

Portugal:Adult Education and Training Funding

Portugal:Early Childhood Education and Care

Portugal:Organisation of Programmes for Children under 3 years

Portugal:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children under 3 years

Portugal:Assessment in Programmes for Children under 3 years

Portugal:Organisation of Programmes for Children over 3 years

Portugal:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 3 years

Portugal:Assessment in Programmes for Children over 3 years

Portugal:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Portugal:Single Structure Education (Integrated Primary and Lower Secondary Education)

Portugal:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Portugal:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Portugal:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Portugal:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

Portugal:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Portugal:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Portugal:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Portugal:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Portugal:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Portugal:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Portugal:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Portugal:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Portugal:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Portugal:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Portugal:Higher Education

Portugal:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Portugal:First Cycle Programmes

Portugal:Bachelor

Portugal:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Portugal:Second Cycle Programmes

Portugal:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Portugal:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Portugal:Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Distribution of Responsibilities

Portugal:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Portugal:Main Providers

Portugal:Main Types of Provision

Portugal:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Portugal:Teachers and Education Staff

Portugal:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Portugal:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Portugal:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Portugal:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Management and Other Education Staff

Portugal:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Portugal:Management Staff for Higher Education

Portugal:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Portugal:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Quality Assurance

Portugal:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Portugal:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Educational Support and Guidance

Portugal:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Portugal:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Portugal:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Portugal:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Portugal:Mobility and Internationalisation

Portugal:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Mobility in Higher Education

Portugal:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Portugal:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Portugal:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Portugal:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Portugal:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Portugal:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Portugal:National Reforms in School Education

Portugal:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Portugal:National Reforms in Higher Education

Portugal:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Portugal:European Perspective

Portugal:Legislation

Portugal:Institutions

Portugal:Glossary

This chapter provides a thematic and chronological overview of national reforms and policy developments since 2015.

For more information on ongoing reforms and policy developments please consult the following articles on reforms in early childhood education and careschool education, vocational education and training and adult learninghigher education and transversal skills and employability. The final article provides an European perspective on the reforms and developments.

Overall national education strategy and key objectives

According to the programme of the 21st Constitutional Government, education and training are considered essential foundations for the people and the country’s future.

The main priority of educational policy involves the mobilisation of Portuguese society in combating school failure, which hinders quality education, equity, learning and the completion of compulsory education for all children and young people.

Improving the qualifications of the Portuguese is essential for helping citizens, democratic citizenship and sustainable development.

A National School Success Promotion Programme (PNPSE) is currently operating, in order to reduce school failure and ensure that all children and young people successfully complete 12 years of high-quality compulsory education. It was created within the framework of educational policy guidelines defined in the 21st Constitutional Government’s Programme, the 2016-2019 Key Options Plan and the Resolution of the Council of Ministers No. 23/2016, 24th March.

Based on the conclusions of a study conducted throughout 2016 that informed the exit profile of students leaving compulsory schooling, the ME implemented a series of measures to change the curriculum and provide pedagogical flexibility to optimize the educational process and provide schools with greater autonomy in how school time is used.

The E-360° system aims to facilitate interaction among all those participating in students’ educational process (parents/guardians, teachers, school leaders, administrative staff and educational administration bodies), allowing for greater collaboration and faster and more effective information exchange among the various stakeholders, ensuring security, confidentiality and existence of information in real-time.

The implementation of the second generation school autonomy contracts has started, aiming to consolidate the pedagogical autonomy of schools and teachers. A new timetable credit system has been implemented, which assigns a set of hours to each school and aims to ensure the implementation of measures that encourage educational success at different levels of education.

It is also worth mentioning the creation of a working group to study professional regulation for teaching Portuguese sign language in schools.

In the area of Adult Education and Training, there have been a number of developments in relation to the Qualifica Programme, with the launch of the Passport and Qualifica Portal, as well as the application process for creating Qualifica Centres, which is undergoing on March 2017.

In the area of Higher Education, from 2017-2018, scholarships will become multi-year, dispensing with the need for annual applications, resolving a situation that has been identified as deterring disadvantaged students from attending higher education, thus improving the levels of qualifications of the Portuguese population in general.

Major investment is also being made in terms of the internationalization and consolidation of the domestic scientific and technological system via measures such as the Interface Programme, which aims to enhance Portuguese products via innovation, increased productivity, value creation and the incorporation of technology in the productive processes of domestic companies.

In addition to this investment, the Government has been promoting scientific dissemination through the creation of the Ciência Viva tours and the Digital Repositories Directory.

Finally, in the area of soft skills ​and employability, the Empreende Já programme has been launched for young NEET (not employed and not in education or training), a new Education for Development Framework was approved, and conditions were created to promote and value scientific and artistic knowledge, stimulating interdisciplinary work between these two fields, promoting more science in culture and more culture in science through the C2 - Science and Culture, Combined Dialogues project.

Other highlights include a private initiative supported by the Ministry of Education for the promotion of soft skills (Skills Jovem), as well as the exarp project, which demonstrates the Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education’s commitment to positive practices of student integration in higher education and making HEIs beacons of knowledge in society. Other important developments include Portugal signing the European Pillar of Social Rights, an initiative currently being debated at the European Council that prioritises the creation of a ‘minimum wage, vocational training for young people and freedom of movement in education systems within the European Union'.

Overview of the education reform process and drivers

Over the years, teachers have rarely been involved in the discussion of curricula. Schools and teachers being involved in constructing and managing curriculum in an integrated and contextualized fashion leads to better-quality learning.

In the initial stages, a survey was given to all teachers in public and private schools on the feasibility of current curriculum documents, their impact on practices and their potential for developing higher-level skills.

As a resulta of this work, a study was published defining the exit profile of young people of 18 years at the end of 12 years of compulsory education.

After defining this exit profile, a second phase was initiated which involves work with the different subject teachers to define the core curriculum in their different areas, so that schools can generally become autonomous in managing curricula.

In a system of compulsory education that has recently been extended to 12 years, the role of pre-school education as the first stage of basic education, closely linked to the 1st cycle of basic education, is strategically important in promoting social justice and equal opportunities.

Pedagogical Guidelines for Crèches are being drawn up in conjunction with the Secretary of State for Social Security (Ministry of Labour and Social Security). This work will be innovative as it takes an integrated view of childhood from 0-6, ensuring pedagogical coherence and continuity between these levels of education until the start of compulsory education.

At the same time, the Ministry of Education has sought to balance centrally defined policies with initiatives from civil society, educational institutions, research centres, companies and local authorities, which has been crucial in supporting the national effort to improve the education system and to promote social and economic development.