Entrepreneurship education is the key for EU's future

Innovation, creativity and capacity to deal with changes are the new challenges for the workforce in the EU. That’s what is mentioned in a study by the European Parliament that affirms entrepreneurship education is key to fight against youth unemployment in the future. The development of transversal skills required by the labour market need new ways for learning and teaching and the inclusion of real world work experience that is practical not theoretical.

REUTERS/Marcelo del Pozo
The acquisition of knowledge, development of attitudes and intents are fundamental for the education of an entrepreneurship spirit and behaviour.

Entrepreneurship in secondary schools

“Entrepreneurship is an individual’s ability to turn ideas into action”. European Council affirms, as is written in the analysis. It's a capacity that can be applied to an independent work or to other jobs or to contribute to commercial and social activities. “Entrepreneurship- European Council affirms- includes creativity, innovation and risk taking, as well as the ability to plan and manage projects in order to achieve objectives.

This supports individuals, not only in their everyday lives at home and in society, but also in the workplace in being aware of the context of their work and being able to seize opportunities, and is a foundation for more specific skills and knowledge needed by those establishing or contributing to social or commercial activity”. While in the EU there’s a variety of entrepreneurship teaching because of different contexts and education system. In Germany and Austria on one hand there are ginnasia that offer a general academic education and on the other hand there are technical schools, vocational schools and colleges, that focus on applications, technical capacities, vocational and cognitive. While where there is not this separation, on one hand it remains to the teacher to find an innovative way to make a subject learnable and on the other hand to ensure the acquisition of competences through different approaches to the subject of interest. In England secondary schools offer a large variety of classes on arts, sciences and technologies. Furthermore, there are some thematic days on entrepreneurship with visits in local workplaces and business . There is a lack of the inclusion of an entrepreneurship education across the disciplines.  Some skills, like leadership and team work, are easier to be learnt for young people around 13-16 years old. But other skills like risk taking are more difficult to be understood. In particular the key competences to transform ideas in action, according with the Key Competence Framework, are: creativity, innovation, critical thinking, initiative, risk taking. The study reveals that in EU countries there is a lack especially in the teaching of the basis of finance, economics and business environment for entrepreneurship and innovation. Even if, according to the study, the acquisition of this knowledge would have an impact on students' choices in life and careers. The connection between schools and business world, the commerce and the industry, is not sufficient. In addition, closure of the gap between girls and boys in entrepreneurship skills acquisition is still far.

@IreneGiuntella

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