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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Distribution of responsibilities


8.Adult education and training

8.1Distribution of responsibilities

Last update: 7 February 2024

At central level, two bodies with responsibilities in adult education and training are the National Agency for Qualification and Vocational Education (Agência Nacional para a Qualificação e o Ensino Profissional – ANQEP, I.P.) and the Institute for Employment and Vocational Training (Instituto do Emprego e Formação Profissional – IEFP, I.P.).

ANQEP, I.P. is a public institution that is part of indirect state administration, overseen by the Ministry of Education (Ministério da Educação – ME) alongside the Ministry of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security (Ministério do Trabalho, Solidariedade e Segurança Social – MTSSS), in conjunction with the Ministry of Economy and the Sea  (Ministério da Economia e  do Mar), boasting administrative, financial and pedagogic autonomy in the pursuit of its duties.

The mission of ANQEP, IP is to improve young people’s and adults’ qualification levels in Portugal, promoting both a greater demand for school and vocational qualifications (dual certification) at the non-higher level, and initial training and lifelong learning provision that is broadly attractive, high quality and relevant to the job market.

IEFP, I.P. is the national public employment service. Its mission is to promote job creation and quality, combating unemployment via the implementation of active employment policies and vocational training. Its various duties include promoting academic and vocational qualifications for young people and adults, via dual certification provision and certified vocational training respectively, tailored to individual pathways and important to the modernisation of the economy.

Also at central level, the Directorate General for Schools is responsible for managing schools, including those providing adult education courses and implementing regional administrative measures. 

At regional and local level, regional authorities implement education and training policies by supervising regional and local bodies: adult qualification centres (Centros Qualifica, supervised by ANQEP), basic and upper secondary education establishments (supervised by the General Directorate for Schools (DGEstE) and vocational training centres (supervised by IEFP).