Due to consistent challenges in unstable and divisive societies, democratic reforms in education are a priority for many governments in the Western Balkan, often in the context of accession to the European Union
All Western Balkan countries have made important steps to modernize their curricula for school education, in line with European standards and approaches. Governments in the region call for a competence-oriented approach, which also reflects values and principles such as democracy, participation and inclusiveness.
The transition from a traditional education approach to a modern competence-oriented system also impacts on how teachers work in schools – and on how future teachers are trained. A change in the learning and teaching culture at teacher education institutions is needed, including changes in the methodology for teacher education and modifications in design and content of university courses as well as ongoing teacher training. As the European Commission pointed out in 2013, the emphasis on theory in teacher education still predominates over the acquisition of practical teaching competences. The gap between theory and practice in teacher training is caused partly by limited traditions of partnerships between teacher education institutions and schools. The project aims to address this situation.
Steering Group and Partners
Key partners of the project are six institutions from the Western Balkan region – both state-actors such as National Education Institutions under the Ministries of Education and NGOs – as well as the Zürich University of Teacher Education as international partner.
The key partners compose a Steering Group ensuring the project is in line with education policies and needs in the region, providing advice on the program concept, supporting in the universities and participating staff, as well as to provide advice and make sure the project stays in line with regional needs and priorities.
The steering group meets once a year.
The agency is responsible for:
• evaluation of the performance of the pre-university education system, public and private;
• professional development and qualification of the educational staff, in public and private sector;
• monitoring quality assurance and the evaluation of the pre-university education institution, public and private and their learning programs;
• guaranteeing the development of curricula of pre-university education, public and private.
Mission: The mission of Agency for Quality Assurance in Pre-university Education (Albanian –ASCAP) is to guarantee the performance and the quality of the Pre-university Education System, be it public and private, in line with the competence based curriculum development approach. Logo:
Bosnia and Herzegovina:
Foundation ’Education in Action
Short description: The Foundation Education in Action is a non-governmental, nonpolitical and nonprofit organization registered in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Foundation is a successor to the UWC-IBO Initiative in BiH which established the UWC Mostar in 2006.
Mission: The Foundation’s mission is to provide the next generations of young people in Bosnia and Herzegovina with the knowledge, skills, leadership qualities and international values, necessary to overcome the ethnic divides and move their nation into the 21st century and to increase the capacity of teachers and educators to become agents of change by giving them an insight on modern teaching methodologies, improving educational standards and spurring educational reform.
In order to fulfill its mission the Foundation established the United World College in Mostar (UWCiM) and the Center for the Professional Development of Teachers (CPDT), cooperating closely with other IB schools in the country and the region.
Short description: The Bureau for Education Services provides the quality of education in institutions and provide advisory work, research and development in pre-primary, primary and secondary education. The Bureau is in charge of proposing changes in education, encourage and help achieving positive pedagogical practice and evaluates its achievements in order to provide quality education. Constant monitoring of education services and improvement of quality of education is basis of Bureau scope of work. Logo:
Kosova Education Center (KEC) is a non-governmental and not-for- profit organization founded in 2000 with the idea of focusing on provision of in-service teacher training programs. This still remains an important aspect of its operations, but, in course of time, KEC has expanded its scope of work in four key areas: 1) Quality of Education, 2) Human Rights; 3) Networking and participation in policy making, and 4) Education research. KEC has a wide range of local and international partners that consist of non-governmental organizations, consulting companies, development agencies and state institutions.
Since 2004, the school “Mileniumi i Tretë” operates within KEC, and carries out its activities in primary and secondary education.
Mission: Develop the capacity for advancing the education system by providing high quality services and resources, and by cooperating actively with all stakeholders in and outside the country.
Institute for Development of Education of Republic of Serbia –
Short description: Institute for Development of Education of the Republic of Serbia performs developmental, advisory, research and professional activities in preschool, primary and secondary education, as well as other tasks in accordance with the law.
The mission of the Institute is to ensure that the tasks related to the preparation of documents, by providing a professional assessment of the quality of textbooks and professional opinions within the competence of the Ministry of Education, are professionally made and generally accepted, and that activities related to coordination and cooperation with preschool institutions, primary and secondary schools, higher education institutions, institutes, economies and employers create preconditions for improving the quality of education and upbringing in the Republic of Serbia.
Bureau for Development of Education is an administration body within the Ministry of Education and Science, and it performs the technical activity of significance for development and improvement of education in the Republic of North Macedonia.
Activity of the Bureau relates to the overall content of the educational work in pre-school, primary, gymnasium, vocational secondary school, education of children with special needs, student dormitories, as well as education of children and citizens of North Macedonia abroad on their native language.
Mission: Bureau for Development of Education strives for mastering the teaching and learning by means of developing new curricula, development of research activity, counselling and teacher training, as well as evaluating the success of students, publishing manuals and other didactical material.