As a beneficiary of the European Social Fund, the Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science will implement on August 19 a project entitled "Qualification of Educational Professionals". This programme is co-financed by the Operational Programme "Human Resources Development" through the department of "Training and Career Development" in partnership with the National Institute for Education and Training in secondary education.
After an open procedure under the Public Procurement Act, the department of "Training and Career Development" selected a contractor for the "Training of pedagogical specialists", employing a new system in public education for the appointment of positions for new instructors, for returning teachers who have taken an extended leave of more than two years, or for teachers who have had their teaching career interrupted for more than two academic years.
The University of Bishop Constantin of Preslav in Varna signed a contract 30 July 2013 as the main contractor to conduct the training of teachers, but the programme will comprise other universities, as well. The programme was named "CAREER 2020". Each university will provide the trainers who will be on public procurement by the department of "Training and career development" at the Ministry of Education and Science.
The focus of the training will be logistics instructors. Other contracting partners are: Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski", the University "of Plovdiv" Shu "Bishop Constantin of Preslav, the Association "Academy for Educational Innovation", the Publishing House "ANUBIS Ltd.", and "International Travel Ltd."
Representing "Careers 2020" is Prof. Valeri Stefanov. The team leader for the implementation of the contract is Dr. Iveta Penkova (Director DIUU - Sofia University "St. Kl. Ohridski"). At the core team are Prof Margarita Georgieva (Rector of Shu "Bishop Constantin of Preslav") and Prof. Dr. Galin Tsokov (PU "of Plovdiv"). Trainers in the contract are eminent academics from the abovementioned institutions and organizations. Re-acquaintance with school practices is implemented by experts from the regional inspectorates of education as well as heads of schools in the country who will act as teachers and trainers of teachers.
The development of educational materials, be it paper-based or in electronic form, is specifically designed for each individual group and contain theoretical information, case studies, class problems as well as self-study and work in groups material. The training will last 32 hours for each trainee.
A total of 3,000 trainees that include pedagogical specialists from kindergartens, primary or secondary schools and servicing units (junior teachers/educators), as well as those teachers who are returning after an extended leave of over two years or after an interruption of teaching experience of more than two academic years, and headmasters.
The trainings will be held at the training centers in 9 major cities: Gabrovo, Kyustendil, Pleven, Plovdiv, Ruse, Sliven, Sofia-city, Stara Zagora and Shumen. The training will commence August 19, 2013 and will end November 2013.
The specific project objectives related to specific training are aimed at: Creating conditions and support of junior teachers through induction training for junior teachers/educators, and for those returning after an extended leave (more than two academic years) or those who return to teaching after an interruption of their teaching experience for more than two years and who wish to improve their skills. In addition, the programme aims at helping encourage and promoting the professional development of headmasters by upgrading their qualifications in accordance with the specific duties assigned to them, and their role in the context of their career development.
"Careers 2020" will create the conditions for systematic and continuous training (induction, maintenance and upgrading) of pedagogical specialists and will help motivate them to improve their knowledge, skills and become competent in the context of lifelong learning.