Archive of European Projects

Arbeiten in Europa
Start date: 01 Sep 2014, End date: 31 Aug 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The Gymnasium am Krebsberg (GaK) of Neunkirchen in the Saarland and the IES Monterroso of Estepona in Andalusia carry out their two-year bilateral project with the title „Working in Europe“ against the backdrop of the very different situation of the economy and employment market in both countries. While the Spanish national economy has been suffering for years from the effects of the financial and economic crisis and while it is hardly able to fix its internal structural problems in central areas of the labour market, the export-oriented German economy presents itself as widely consolidated as the positive development of the numbers on its employment market prove. Juvenile unemployment must be considered as especially rich in contrast: South Spain suffers with a percentage of 63% the highest rate of unemployment of young people of under 25 years of age throughout Europe (36,3% on a national level according to data from the end of 2013), whereas Germany has been able to achieve the lowest rate across Europe in the same age group with 5,9% unemployment (6,7% in the Saarland). The German employment market is already partly characterized by the absence of skilled employees and the lacking willingness of employees to assume responsibility. For that reason companies and political decision-makers systematically endeavor to find workforce in the other European countries, among others Spain. In view of the situation discussed above our bilateral collaboration wants to allow the students of both countries to contribute to their educational orientation and their abilities of making future career choices. The key objectives of our project are the promotion of education and the reduction of the drop-out rate. The acquisition of foreign languages, the knowledge of new information and communication technologies and the acquisition of social skills is of great value. The project on the one hand helps to promote the young people’s employment and entreprenourship by obtaining an inside view of the structures of the German and Spanish employment market. On the other hand it certainly encourages mobility due to the participation in an international exchange and the enhancement of education, career and job prospects in Europe as well as the promotion of the European awareness among the participating students, parents and teachers as a result of their project work and training. About 50 Spanish and 50 German students will participate in the project, 24 of which will take part in the local exchanges in Estepona and Neunkirchen. The students, who are 14 years old at the start of the project, are in their second year of learning German or Spanish as a second or even third foreign language. The teachers involved in the project (10 per school), four of which will also take part in short-term training courses, teach the subjects of Spanish/German, Political Education/Social Studies/Economics, English, Computer Science and PE. In both schools, members of the school management as well as parents are involved in the preparation and the accomplishment of related activities. In the first year of the project the teamwork will take place mainly via TwinSpace on the European eTwinning platform: the participants create their own profile and CV in the foreign language; they collaborate in the establishment of an online glossary, “World of Work”, and in the creation of typical job profiles and they help prepare questionnaires for their interviews with professionals. Also during the first year, two teachers of each school will take part in short-term training courses at the respective partner school, in which they get to know methods of education and career orientation for the local students, they observe other colleagues’ lessons, take part in conferences, exchange teaching and learning materials or gain insight in the students’ professional practical training. During the second year the focus of the project will be on the short-term exchange of students whose red thread will be a business game simulating the foundation of an enterprise. Therefore, the students found Spanish-German enterprises. They develop an idea of a product or service for it, design a logo, set prices, prove their negotiation and management skills in an international context, including personnel and financial resources planning and decide on marketing measures. In a short amount of time we expect an improvement of the foreign language skills of all the participants and a promotion and strengthening of their intercultural competence. A further intended effect is that the students become motivated to make sacrifices and efforts so that their resulting success at school offers them future prospects on the European employment market. The project it thought to enhance the European identity supported by well-educated and motivated teachers too. All the parties should experience European mobility as a chance to strengthen the belief in a common Europe and in mutual tolerance.
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