The Tool in a Nutshell
The SOLITY (Full Title: VET Social Utility Monitor; No: 590169-EPP-2017-IT-PI-FORWARD) project officially started in January 2018, funded in the framework of the EACEA-41-2016 call: Support for Policy Reform - ERASMUS+ Key Action 3 - Sub-Action: Forward Looking Cooperation Projects.
SOLITY was born from the idea of linking the assessment of VET performance to the assessment of its impact on the overall society, thus aiming to provide all European VET providers with a common tool to assess their impact, quality and performances at multiple levels.
SOLITY stemmed from the vision of 6 partners working in the field of VET at national and European level:
- ENAIP NET IMPRESA SOCIALE SOCIETÀ CONSORTILE SRL (Italy - Project Coordinator)
- AFPA - AGENCE NATIONALE POUR LA FORMATION PROFESSIONNELLE DES ADULTES (France)
- IB - Internationaler Bund Berlin-Brandenburg gGmbH (Germany)
- LE FOREM - SERVICE PUBLIC WALLON DE L’EMPLOI ET DE LA FORMATION PROFESSIONNELLE (Belgium)
- EVTA – EUROPEAN VOCATIONAL TRAINING ASSOCIATION
- EVBB - EUROPAISCHER VERBAND BERUFLICHER BILDUNGSTRAGER
Over the course of the project, four key steps were followed to deliver the self-assessment tool:
- Testing and validation
- Dissemination and promotion
The selection and definition of the indicators to use in the SOLITY framework have been based upon what was already in place in the field of quality systems for VET, both at transnational (EQAVET, ISO) and national (Accreditation systems, AFPA model) level: starting from this vast and heterogeneous basis, and by following a strong and large cooperative approach, the project developed a model that can measure the social utility of a VET provider.
The designed model has been not only developed but also tested and validated through a series of actions that involved, among others, VET experts from all EU countries.
The novelty of the SOLITY approach is based on its attempt to develop a bottom-up system that encompasses what is already in place in the field of performance/quality assessment for VET and that shifts the focus on the social utility of VET, which means linking the assessment of VET performance to a concept of accountability (and transparency) towards society.
The SOLITY Tool was officially made public in January 2020.
In order to deliver it, the project built on the following two concepts:
- FOCUS ON SOCIAL UTILITY: in addition to collecting a set of data to make specific micro-economical evaluations, the ambition behind assessing VET performance is to be able to highlight VET social utility, i.e. its positive impact on society.
- MAKE VET A FIRST CHOICE: assessing VET social utility is not only a way to evaluate its direct and visible impact or to evaluate whether the funding that public or private bodies put on VET is well spent, but also a way to educate society to see the individual and social value of Vocational and Educational Training, which is on the contrary often perceived as a second choice.
The final outcome of the SOLITY project was, therefore, the set-up of a solid, bottom-up and transferable model to assess VET social utility, based on a specific pool of qualitative and quantitative indicators, which is how the first version of the SOLITY tool was created and made available in English, Italian, French and German
Thanks to the VENHANS project, the SOLITY Tool found a new and improved home in the VET4EU2 Platform. As of June 2022, its 2.0 version is now available in 17 new languages, so to allow access to social utility benchmarking to the VET centers of all the 27 EU countries.
Start using SOLITY - Access here
An additional feature is provided by EVTA through an on-demand service acting as an info-point to assist interested VET providers/training centers in developing their own Roadmap for Quality after having been benchmarked. Find out more about the SOLITY Support Service:
VET providers will be allowed to:
- self-assess their strengths and weaknesses with a bottom-up designed tool
- understand how and where to act in order to enhance their overall performance
Decision/Policy makers at regional, national and European level will be allowed to:
- make public funding to VET more transparent
- foster the building of a system aimed at increasing the overall quality and social utility of VET
- use the tool to define better development and support policies for VET
Stakeholders will be allowed to:
- better assess the quality of the various VET providers
- benefit from a better service as VET providers will find themselves eager to improve where they are performing poorly