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Romania:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

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Romania:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Romania:Historical Development

Romania:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Romania:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Romania:Political and Economic Situation

Romania:Organisation and Governance

Romania:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Romania:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Romania:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Romania:Organisation of Private Education

Romania:National Qualifications Framework

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

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

Romania:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Romania:Funding in Education

Romania:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Romania:Higher Education Funding

Romania:Adult Education and Training Funding

Romania:Early Childhood Education and Care

Romania:Organisation of Early Childhood Education and Care

Romania:Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Education and Care

Romania:Assessment in Early Childhood Education and Care

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

Romania:Primary Education

Romania:Organisation of Primary Education

Romania:Teaching and Learning in Primary Education

Romania:Assessment in Primary Education

Romania:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Primary Education

Romania:Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Romania:Organisation of General Lower Secondary Education

Romania:Teaching and Learning in General Lower Secondary Education

Romania:Assessment in General Lower Secondary Education

Romania:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Romania:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Romania:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Romania:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Romania:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Romania:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Romania:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

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

Romania:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Romania:Higher Education

Romania:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Romania:First Cycle Programmes

Romania:Bachelor

Romania:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Romania:Second Cycle Programmes

Romania:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Romania:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Romania:Adult Education and Training

Romania:Distribution of Responsibilities

Romania:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Romania:Main Providers

Romania:Main Types of Provision

Romania:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Romania:Teachers and Education Staff

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

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

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

Romania: Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

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

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

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

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

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

Romania:Management and Other Education Staff

Romania:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

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

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

Romania:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Romania:Management Staff for Higher Education

Romania:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Romania:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

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

Romania:Quality Assurance

Romania:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Romania:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Romania:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Romania:Educational Support and Guidance

Romania:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

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

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

Romania:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Romania:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Romania:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Romania:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Romania:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Romania:Mobility and Internationalisation

Romania:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Romania:Mobility in Higher Education

Romania:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

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

Romania:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Romania:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Romania:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Romania:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Romania:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Romania:National Reforms in School Education

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

Romania:National Reforms in Higher Education

Romania:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Romania:European Perspective

Romania:Legislation

Romania:Institutions

Romania:Bibliography

Romania:Glossary

Vocational education and training includes the following: vocational education, high-school vocational education and post-secondary vocational training.

Vocational education is organised in two ways at present (in the transition period until the provisions of the Law of National Education 1/2011 come into force):

  • Vocational education with 2 years duration, organised for students who complete the 9th grade  of high-school, for any path, profile or field of training, which leads to the final professional qualification of Level 2 (Level 3 EQF, Level 2 ISCED);
  • Practical traineeships with 720 hours duration, organised for students who complete the 10th grade of high-school, the technological path, which leads to the final professional qualification of Level 2 (Level 3 EQF, Level 2 ISCED).

High-school education is organised in three paths: the general path, the technological (vocational) path and the aptitude-based path.

The technological path of high-school education has the following profiles: technical, services, natural resources and environment protection.

High-school education is organised and takes place, usually, as full-time education. It can also be organised and take place as part-time education in schools selected by the School Inspectorate in cooperation with the authorities of local public administration.

Technological high-school education is organised, according to the Law of National Education, with 3/4 years duration covering the high-school grades 10 - 12/13, and leads to the final professional qualification of Level 3 (Level 4 EQF, Level 3 ISCED). The duration of studies in high-school education – as full-time education – is 3 years for the general path, 3 or 4 years for the aptitude-based path and 4 years for the technological (vocational) path.

At present, according to the transitory provisions of the Law of National Education, until 2015, high-school education is organised with 4/5 years duration, grades 9 – 12/13. The duration of studies in high-school education - as full-time education - is 4 years for all paths. The duration of studies in high-school education - as full-time education with evening classes is 5 years for all paths.

Post-secondary education includes the post-secondary school and the foremen school.

The post-secondary school and the foremen school are organised with 1 - 3 years duration and lead to the final professional qualification of advanced Level 3 (Level 5 EQF, Level 4 ISCED).

Upper secondary vocational education and training, according to the Law of National Education, includes the technological high-school education, with grades 10 - 13.

Upper secondary vocational education and training, according to the transitory provisions of the Law of National Education, until 2015, also includes the technological high-school education with grades 11-12/13, for full-time education/evening classes. 

Types of Institution

The school network is made of all accredited and temporarily authorised schools.

The network of public and private schools, at school education level, is organised by the authorities of local public administration, with the approval of the School Inspectorates. For special high-school education and special post-secondary education, the school network is organised by the County Council, and by the Local Councils of the Bucharest sectors respectively, in consultation with the social partners and with the approval of the Ministry of the National Education.

At school education level, schools of any type, level, full-type or part-time education, any path and profile are the subject of accreditation and regular evaluation, by law, carried out by the Romanian Agency for Quality Assurance in School Education.

The school network is made public at the beginning of every year, for the next school year.

To ensure the quality of education, at the proposal of authorities of local public administration or at their own initiative, the County School Inspectorates can ask the Ministry of National Education to withdraw the accreditation/authorisation of a school with legal person statute or of one of its structures, in compliance with the law. In case the Romanian Agency for Quality Assurance in School Education withdraws an accreditation/authorisation of a school because legal conditions are not met, the school stops its activity. The authorities of local public administration distribute students to other schools, while observing the children’s interests and the provision of the necessary logistics.

Vocational education can be organised in vocational schools that can be independent or affiliated to technological high-schools, public or private.

Technological high-school education can be organised in high-schools of the technological path, for qualifications of the National Registry of Qualifications, regularly updated, based on the needs of the labour market, identified by strategic planning documents of the regional, county and local training provision.

Technological high-school education can also be organised following requests from private employers or from the National Employment Agency, based on training contracts.

The practical traineeships during the technological path can be organised at school level and/or in companies or public institutions with which schools have concluded contracts for practical training or at host organisations from abroad, for programmes of the European Union - the initial vocational training component.

Vocational education and training in Romania is organised and takes place in several types of schools: high-schools, colleges, vocational schools, post-secondary schools.

Geographical Accessibility

Most of high-schools and school groups are in urban areas. Some technological high-schools, as well as some of the general and aptitude-based high-schools, are organised as boarding schools – they provide accommodation and meals for students. In order to improve access to education for all, the Law of National Education provides for all students, throughout the year, a 50% discount for the local public transport.

Students who cannot attend school in their area of residence are reimbursed the transport costs from the budget of the Ministry of National Education, through their schools, based on their transport subscription, in the limit of 50 km, or they are reimbursed a sum representing the value of 8 to-and-back travels in a semester, if they live in a boarding facility or pay rent.

Due to this facility and based on concrete local conditions (distance, existing transport means, daily timetable etc.), a relatively important number of students choose to commute daily between their area of residence and their school instead of a boarding facility.

The state provides subsidies for all costs related to the attendance of high-school for students from rural areas or from disadvantaged socio-economic groups, as well as for those who attend a vocational school. The way the subsidies are provided is defined by a Government Decision initiated by the Ministry of National Education.

In every development region, the high-school network has developed in accordance with the regional, county and local demands of the labour market. The reform at social and economic level of the development regions has led to a need to restructure the network of high-schools and school groups in order to meet the requirements of a changing society and economy, as well as to achieve the strategic objectives of regional development. Local authorities have taken measures both to unify high-schools and vocational schools with similar profiles and specialisations, and to adjust the educational provision to local and regional demands. 

Admission Requirements and Choice of School

The number of places in schools for all levels of public education is set every year by a Government Decision, based on proposals from the Ministry of National Education, at least 6 months before the beginning of the school year.

The proposal of the ministry is preceded by a succession of phases that ensure its bases – design – consultation, involving: the authorities of local public administration, the County School Inspectorates, the Local Committees for the Development of Social Partnership in Vocational Education, representative teacher unions, other partners. For every county, the number of places in public schools is set by a Minister Order, in compliance with the provisions of the Government Decision that reflect the results of the consultation process. Every year, the Ministry of National Education develops the Methodology/Instructions for establishing the bases for the number of places in schools and the network of public schools at school education level.

According to the Law of National Education, admission to high-school (upper secondary education) or to the vocational school will be, from 2015, in compliance with the Framework methodology for the organisation of admission to the 10th grade, which is developed by the Ministry of National Education and made public, for every generation, at the latest at the beginning of the 8th grade.  According to the Law of National Education, the procedure for admission to high-school or to the vocational school will be as follows:

  • In case the number of applicants does not exceed the number of places offered by a school, admission will be based on student’s educational portfolio.
  • In case there are more applicants than the number of places offered by a school, admission will take into account the student’s educational portfolio, the average mark of the completion of compulsory education, as well as the average mark at the tests of the national assessment at the end of grade 9 – weighing 70%, and for 30%, the mark at the admission test defined by the school.
  • In case there are equal average marks, differentiation will be based on student’s educational portfolio.
  • The additional admission test will be taken at two subjects at the most.

At present, admission to high-school is based on the Methodology for the organisation of admission to public high-school education, approved every year by Order of the Education Minister. According to the methodology for the 2013/2014 school year, students who complete the 8th grade are enrolled without examination, based on the admission average mark. The admission average mark is the arithmetic average of the general average mark of the completion of grades 5-8 and the general average mark at the national assessment taken by students who complete the 8th grade. The admission to the 9th grade of the technological high-school of the students who complete the 8th grade is done by computerised distribution, in the decreasing order of the admission average marks, based on the applicant’s and their parents’ options for schools, paths, profiles, specialisations or vocational training areas available in the training offer at national level and in the limit of the approved number of places, in the schooling plan, for schools funded from the state budget.  

At present, according to the transitory provisions of the Law of National Education, until 2015, admission to upper secondary education (upper cycle of high-school, grades 11-12/13) is done for all students who complete the lower cycle of high-school (grades 9-10) without any other admission conditions besides the completion of the 10th grade of high-school.

Age Levels and Grouping of Pupils

Grades are generally homogenous with regard to the age of students. In upper secondary vocational education and training the indicative age level is 16-18 (19) years old and includes grades 11-12/13.

The number of students in a class depends on the educational level and is set by the Law of National Education: in upper secondary vocational education and training there are on average 25 students in a class, but not less than 15 and no more than 30.

The Ministry of National Education can approve the functioning of classes with a number of students below the minimum number or over the maximum number per class provided by law – according to concrete local conditions (isolated areas, classes where teaching is in a national minority language etc.).

In school education, students can transfer from a school to another, from a path to another etc. – in compliance with the Rules for the organisation and functioning of schools at school education level (Order of Minister 4925/2005). Students with exceptional aptitudes and achievements can pass two years in a single school year, based on a procedure approved by a Minister Order.

Practical training organised in compact periods (merged training) can take place in groups (usually not less than 10 students in a group). Foreign languages are taught to the whole class. For this reason, classes are established based on the foreign languages learned in gimnaziu education. In case a number of students learned in gimnaziu other foreign language than that learned by the majority of students in the class established in high-school, conditions are created for the students to continue to learn the language they studied in gimnaziu in other school.

According to the Rules for the organisation and functioning of schools at school education level, approved by Order of the Education and Research Minister 4925/2005, with its subsequent changes and completions (Order of the Education, Research, Youth and Sports Minister 6152 of 7 November 2012), students have the right to transfer from a school to another, from a path to another, from a profile to another, from a specialisation/professional qualification to another, from one form of education to another, in compliance with the provisions of the internal rules of the school to which they transfer. The transfer is done with the consultative advice of the Administration Council of the school from which a student transfers and with the approval of the Administration Council of the school to which the student transfers.

The transfer of students during the school year can be done, exceptionally, in the following situations:

  • when students change their permanent residence in other town/village or other sector of the Bucharest municipality;
  • at a transfer recommendation issued based on the medical expertise of a Public Health Department;
  • to/from arts or sports education;
  • from classes of high-school education to classes of vocational education;
  • from intensive or bilingual education to other profiles;
  • in other exceptional situations, with the approval of the Administration Council of the School Inspectorate.

Students in the 9th grade can transfer only after the first semester, if their admission average mark is at least equal to the average mark of the last student admitted to the specialisation for which the transfer is requested. In particular medical situations, students in the 9th grade can be transferred during the first semester or before it begins, based on the advice of the County/Bucharest Medical Commission, while observing the average mark condition mentioned above.

Students in grades 10 – 12/13 can transfer, usually, to classes where their average mark for the latest school year is at least equal to the average mark of the last student who completed the grade in the class to which the transfer is requested. Exceptions from this provision are approved by the Teacher Council.

In vocational education, students can transfer as follows:

  • in the same school, from a class to another, in the limit of 30 students per class;
  • from one school to another, in the limit of 30 students per class.

In case a student wants to change the training area/professional qualification, examinations for the differences are taken.

In post-secondary education, students can transfer from a professional qualification to another, within the same profile, in the limit of 30 students per class. In case a student wants to change the professional qualification, examinations for the differences are taken.

Students in high-school education can transfer, keeping the type of education – full-time or part-time, as follows:

  • in the same school, from a class to another, with the same specialisation/professional qualification, in the limit of 30 students per class;
  • in the same school, from a path to another, from a profile to another, from a specialisation to another, from a professional qualification to another, in the limit of 30 students per class, after passing examinations for differences;
  • from one high-school to another, keeping the path, profile, specialisation, and the professional qualification respectively, in the limit of 30 students per class, based on the criteria provided by these Rules and the internal rules of the high-school to which transfer is requested;
  • from one high-school to another, changing the path, profile, specialisation, and the professional qualification respectively, in the limit of 30 students per class, after passing examinations for differences, based on the criteria provided by the internal rules of the school to which transfer is requested. 

Organisation of the School Year

The organisation of the school year for vocational education and training is defined every year by Order of the Education Minister. The structure of the school year is based on a series of considerations: a balanced distribution of school days and holidays, the specific climate of Romania, the respect for population’s religious beliefs. The National Curriculum is established by the Ministry of National Education and it stipulates for every educational level in school education and every grade: the number of hours per week and school year, the number of school weeks; the number of hours per week for every subject/training module for the core curriculum, the differentiated curriculum and the school-based curriculum, the number of hours of practical training per week and the number of hours of merged training.

In the framework given by the structure of the school year and the National Curriculum, every school has full responsibility to establish the daily and the weekly timetable for every class of students.

The school year in Romania has, for upper secondary vocational education and training, two semesters, two holidays during the school year and a holiday between school years. The exact calendar of the school year is set every year by Order of the Education Minister.

Schools can request the County School Inspectorates to make changes to the calendar of the school year for objective reasons: special climate conditions, the specificity of the area (agricultural work), natural disasters, schools where most of the students have other religious belief than the Orthodox one etc. The County School Inspectorates can approve such requests provided that, for all students, the total number of school weeks and the corresponding number of school days established by Order of the National Education Minister are respected. 

Organisation of the School Day and Week

The weekly timetable (a system with 5 days of school per week) and the daily timetable for vocational education and training are defined by the Administration Council of the school after consulting teachers and parents and based on the following criteria: the number of hours per week set by the Framework Plans for every subject and grade; the total number of hours per week set by the Framework Plans for every grade. According to the provisions of the Framework Plans in force, the total number of hours per week and grade for full-time vocational education and training depends on the educational level and, accordingly, on the path, profile and specialisation/professional qualification.

Vocational education and training is organised in a system with 5 days of school per week. The duration of lessons is 50 minutes and they are followed by 10 minutes breaks. Most of schools organise a 20 minutes break after the third lesson. The number of lessons/day is 6, and the number of lessons/week is 30. The daily programme usually starts at 8 o’clock. For a small number of schools where classes are organised in two shifts, due to the insufficient number of spaces compared to the number of classes of students, the programme takes place for the morning classes between 8 and 14, and for the afternoon classes between 14 and 20.