The report summarizes the results of the interim evaluation of the European Lifelong Learning programme 2007-2009 (or simply LLP) in Estonia. The evaluation was carried out according to the guidelines given by the European Commission. All relevant documents available were used in the evaluation process as well as 11 interviews with the programme’s national implementers and relevant policy makers in the respective policy fields.
The results of the interim evaluation give proof of the programme’s successful implementation in Estonia. Due to many years’ worth of good experience, subprograms of lifelong learning have developed in Estonian educational system. Despite its limited scope, LLP along with its subprograms have significantly contributed to the internationalization and increased openness of Estonian educational system. LLP also plays a part in facilitating collaboration, creating networks, and promoting the quality of education.
The overview of the programme’s relevance suggests that at the moment, there are no real alternatives to lifelong learning in Estonia. It is worth mentioning that cooperation networks created by the LLP have helped to introduce additional internationalization schemes to Estonian education.
Although the evaluation shows that there are no major problems for the beneficiaries, there are a few issues regarding the implementation of the programme, the most acute of them and in need of addressing from the European Commission related to the dysfunctional management tools, disturbing and frequent changes in programme’s procedures, delays in documenting, and insufficient funding (Grundtvig most of all).
Suggestions and recommendations to the European Commission:
- direct attention to dysfunctional management supporting tools and minimizing duplication
- ensuring greater stability and less changes in the programme
- opportunity for the countries to have a say in approved partnerships
- going over the budgets of subprograms
- timely provision of implementation documentation
- bringing centralized procedures closer to the beneficiaries
- avoiding unreasonable regulation