The teacher training programmes of the Council Europe "Pestalozzi" and “European Centre for Modern Languages, ECML "are some of the financial sources for the mobility of teachers and other educators in Albania. These programs offer trainings for all levels of education (early childhood, basic and secondary education) in Albania.
These forms of mobility are focused mainly on “Cultural exchange” The training courses usually last from 2 to 4 weeks and the topics are addressed to issues on intercultural communication and language learning. The training courses for the development of vocational skills usually last from 2 to 6 weeks.
Albania is a member of the Council of Europe for “Pestalozzi” teacher training programme”. The Ministry of Education and Sports and the Institute for Educational Development are the main responsible educational institutions for these kinds of exchange.
The Council of Europe within the framework of European Cultural Convention has started to implement the program since 1961. It offers various training opportunities for teachers, teacher trainers, school heads and other professionals in primary, basic and secondary education. The participants come from all over Europe (from the 49 countries party to the European Cultural Convention) and almost 2000 participants annually.
The program is administered by the Division of the Council of Europe Educational Policy and a European dimension in the Member States is managed by the National Coordinators. Candidates interested in participating in a module series are invited to contact their National Liaison Officer (NLO) In Albania, up to 2010, the Ministry of Education and Sports has been responsible for Pestalozzi Programme. The institute of Educational Development is actually managing this programme, as the one of the main specialized institute for teacher training. It is a part of the Pestalozzi network since 2010. Teachers interested to be trained in these activities apply individually, while the selection of candidates for Pestalozzi Programme is done by the organizers of Council of Europe. All the expenses for the selected participants are covered by the Council of Europe.
The Pestalozzi program has provided many opportunities to the Albanian teachers. The Ministry of Education and Sports and the Institute of the Educational Development have forwarded the list of training seminars at the regional educational departments and their respective offices. All school teachers, inspectors, trainers, specialists in relevant fields, are interested to participate in these activities,
This programme has made possible the participation of many teachers from different regions of Albania at international conferences and training courses organized in various countries by the Council of Europe: in Romania, Germany, Malta, Macedonia, Spain, Switzerland, Austria and Bulgaria, but also in Albania. Under this program, the topics are focused on professional development of teachers and other education stakeholders.
The following themes covered by the Pestalozzi Programme are closely linked to the Council of Europe priority projects, particularly in the field of education:
- Education for democratic citizenship and Human rights education ;
- Intercultural education and Education for socio-cultural diversity
- History education
- Remembrance and the prevention of crimes against humanity ;
- Education of Roma children in Europe - Children’s rights;
- Prevention of violence ;
- Medialiteracy ;
- Gender equality and gender mainstreaming in education;
- Other themes and general concerns and methodology.
The modules offer a unique experience in a stimulating international community which gathers trainers coming from across Europe and beyond.
The programme ECML is managed by the department of the pre-university education in the Ministry of Education and Sport of Albania. It is responsible for ECML events. It disseminates information on ECML’s resources but at the same time introduces to them on the Centre's work and activities. It aims the professional development of the teachers. According to the fields of interest and after the requests of the Albanian candidates who are interested to participate in ECML workshops, the responsible authority in Albania select the Albanian nominees.
The ECML offers to its member states European expertise in language education adapted to the concrete needs and specific contexts within individual countries. It supports language teaching in Albania by implementing effective language education policies. It provides training modules, guidelines and toolkits for teacher educators, equipping them to train others within their institutions and networks. In addition to multilateral projects, the ECML offers bilateral support, tailored to the specific needs of the target group, through its Training and Consultancy for member states.
The calendar of the activities for eachyear is available by the end of the year and the online registration system is open every January. Teachers of the foreign languages and other experts from the educational institutions apply systematically for the training courses organized by the European Centre for Modern Languages, ECML.
As stated above, the EU projects are supported by European funds and promote the mobility of teachers from vocational schools, teachers, educators and people working in public institutions and organizations in the field of education and training. Through these projects the teachers benefit from each other on educational issues.
Regarding the International Co-operation agreement on Holocaust Education, representatives of the Ministry of Education and Sports of Albania and the Institute of Educational Development take part in the Israel activities on holocaust education by giving political support to these activities in national and international contexts. The relationship between Albania and the Holocaust is a unique one.
It is the second agreement such as Memorandum of Understanding signed between Albania and Yad Vashem. Earlier this year Yad Vashem's International School for Holocaust Studies and the Albanian Ministry of Education and Sport agreed to conduct educational seminars at Yad Vashem for Albanian teachers to study how to educate future generations about the Holocaust. This agreement has already brought the first seminar of Albanian educators to Yad Vashem, currently participating in a seminar in the International School at Yad Vashem.
Through the new agreement, the Ministry of Education and Sport is able to accredit all seminars for teachers from Albania held in cooperation with Yad Vashem, by providing certificates to its graduates. These professional development programs have been recognized by the Albanian Ministry of Education and Sport.