27.12.2018Center Amalipe held 18 trainings to pedagogical specialists under the Every student will be a winner training program

Positive and emotional and at the same time loading with new knowledge and useful experience...

 That is just a small part of the evaluation given to Amalipe Center after the end of the total of 18 trainings on  Every student will be a winner: practices for activating students and stimulating student participation program.

More than 450 pedagogical specialists from dozens of schools in the country took part in them. The trainings were conducted within Project BG05M2OP001-2.010-0001 Qualification for professional development of pedagogical specialists, implemented by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Bulgaria, funded under the Operational Program "Science and Education for Smart Growth" 2014-2020. Within the framework of the qualification program Amalipe Center has been approved one training course Every student will be a winner: practices for activating students and stimulating student participation, which meets the requirements of the thematic areas of Action 1, Support for Professional Development and Development of Professional Skills of pedagogical specialists through trainings ending with the award of 1 to 3 qualification credits according to Ordinance No. 12 of 01.09.2016.

The program is based on the Amalipe Center Every Student Will Be a Winner Network, developed over the last 7 years in over 250 schools across the country. It includes the basic practices developed by Amalipe Center to motivate students and stimulate student activity. The program is implemented in two main modules and includes the presentation of elements aimed at encouraging student activity and involving students in case studies of other students at risk of dropping out: involving parents into the school life of their children - parent clubs; promoting responsible behavior among young people - developing students  - mentors practice - organizing youth volunteer clubs and promoting volunteering among students.

On 04.10.2018, the Ministry of Education and Science started the implementation of the Qualification for professional development of pedagogical specialists project, funded under the Operational Program "Science and Education for Smart Growth" 2014-2020. The project will be implemented for three academic years - 2018/2019, 2019/2020 and 2020/2021. The qualification program is aimed at all those working in the pre-school and school education system and will cover the whole country.

27.12.2018The Socio-Economic Integration Projects have been approved ...

The Managing Authorities of the Operational Programs "Human Resources Development" and "Science and Education for Smart Growth" approved another 33 municipal projects under Component 1 of the Integrated Procedure "Socio-Economic Integration ...". Approved projects are biannual and will start in the beginning of 2019 and end on 31 December 2020. Approved applicants will be invited to provide evidence that they are eligible for a grant, including the rules in the Applicant's Terms. Information on the documents applicable to each individual applicant and its partners and the deadlines for their submission will be received in an individual e-mail letter associated with the profile of the respective municipality in the UMIS system.

A month earlier, 15 other municipal projects were approved. So a total of 48 municipalities and their partners - employers, schools / kindergartens and NGOs - will receive between 381 000 and 890 000  BGN for relatively large-scale intervention at the municipal level, covering employment, social and health services, education, and combat stereotypes and community development. Approved municipalities are Borovo, Kubrat, Antonovo, Satovcha, Cherven Bryag, Nikola Kozlevo, Tvarditsa, Yakimovo, Septemvri, Bratsigovo, Lukovit, Tundzha, Pavlikeni, Rakitovo, Dryanovo, Zavet, Tervel, Sredets, Pravets, Ihtiman, Vidin, Samuil, Valchi dol, Sliven, Belitsa, Gulyantsi, Lesichovo, Boychinovtsi, Hadjidimovo, Krivodol, Polski Trambesh, Etropole, Isperih, Dve Mogili, Botevgrad, Strazhitsa, Smyadovo, Lyaskovets, Radomir, Krasna Polyana, Dolna Mitropolia, Borovan, Kaspichan, Dolna Banya , Shabla, Novo Selo, Kyustendil, and Simitli. Only the project of the municipality of Elin Pelin was rejected. The approved municipalities will sign a tripartite contract with the heads of the two Managing Authorities - OPHRD (Deputy Minister Zornitsa Rusinova) and OPSESG(Mr. Kiril Geratliev). Reports will then be submitted to each of the two operational programs separately. 

Upon receiving an individual invitation, municipalities will be able to sign a contract as soon as they provide the requested documents. A full list of required documents for a contract under the procedure can be found here.


What is the operation for?

Through it MAs of OP Human Resources Development and Science and education for smart growth will support the implementation of municipal plans for Roma Integartion 2015 - 2020. Concrete beneficiary of the operation are the municipalities that have approved - by decision of the Municipal Council - Municipal Roma Integration Plan 2015 - 2020. They apply only in mandatory partnership with at least one NGO, school / kindergarten and employer. 

It is envisaged to implement the Integrated Procedure in two components: 

Component 1: On the territory of municipalities with updated municipal plans for Roma integration for the period 2015-2020, in accordance with the National Strategy of the Republic of Bulgaria on Roma Inclusion 2012-2020. Those are municipalities from the so- called "Rural areas", as well as those urbanized municipalities that do not have social housing in their RDP. They will apply the so called "soft measures", divided into 4 strands: access to employment, education, social and health services, development of local communities and overcoming negative stereotypes;

Component 2: The territory of the municipalities of 39 cities from first to third hierarchical level of the national polycentric system according NKPR 2013-2025 - beneficiaries under Priority Axis 1 of OPRD 2014-2020, whose RDP have included measures to build social housing. Both the "soft measures" and the construction / reconstruction of social housing will be implemented in them. 

Municipalities, who have not submit project concepts

Since the approved projects under Component 1 are worth BGN 37 million, which is lower than BGN 70 million, allocated by OPHRD and OPSESG, it is expected to re-invite eligible municipalities under Component 1. It has not yet been decided in what form and when this will happen. The request for a second invitation to municipalities was also made at a meeting of organizations from the Network for Roma integration with the heads of both the Managing Authorities - OPHRD (Deputy Minister Rusinova) and OPSESG (Mr Kiril Geratliev).

27.12.2018Financing Ordinance Changes - what do they provide?

The state budget pledges to finance extracurricular activities at school and municipal level; resources for additional work with vulnerable groups will also be provided for an average level and schools and kindergartens will be able to engage with them NGOs; the education ministry provides more opportunities for forming classes with fewer students. This became apparent after the promulgation of the amendments to the Financing Ordinance, published in the State Gazette, no. 105 on 18.12.2018.

State and municipal schools will receive additional funds annually for the organization of extracurricular activities in the primary and intermediate level, is set in the new Art. 16a, 16b and 16c. The state budget will provide these funds on the basis of interest norms per institution and per student in a daily form or in a dual education system, according to NISIPO data from 1st of January of the present year. According to a decision of Council of Ministers number 776 / 30.10.2018 in 2019 the norms will be BGN 1900 per school and BGN 30 per student. The municipalities will receive the funds and distribute them to the municipal schools, retaining 12% of the extracurricular activities per student (not per institution norm) to organize extracurricular activities at the municipal level. With the funds received, the schools will finance the remuneration of the trainers of groups, external contractors, purchase of materials, subscriptions to specialized literature and electronic products, visits to cultural, historical and sports sites, and transport. Any funds not spent during the year will be transferred as a transitional balance and will only be spent on extracurricular activities.

Vocational schools and all other schools teaching high school students will receive funding for working with vulnerable groups, similar to primary schools, providing for a change in Art. 52b of the Ordinance. In 2018, for the first time, the Ministry of Education and Science distributed nearly BGN 24 million between schools and kindergartens to work with children and students from vulnerable groups. They only concerned students up to seventh grade, with primary and secondary schools receiving additional funding for only the primary classes students. From 2019, a resource will be provided for both primary and intermediate level, with the standard for pupils in the primary classes remaining the same, and for upper secondary classes being two times lower. 

Change in Art. 52 a explicitly allows the kindergarten or school to use means to work with vulnerable groups to outsource part of the external activities to NGOs, and the funds being provided only for the labor costs of the employees for implementing specific activities. The changes in Art. 52a and 52b were proposed by Amalipe Center and schools of the "Every student will be a winner" network, being supported by Minister Valchev during a meeting with Roma Integration Network organizations in September. More information can be found here.

Relieved conditions for the division of the classes into two or three classes, provides the amended Art. 63. The number of classes in the schools under Art. 52b and in schools with classes for acquiring qualification in state-protected professional specialties and such where there is an expected shortage of specialists in the labor market can be formed with a number of students below the minimum.


State Gazette, issue no. 105, 18.12.2018, see here



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