Guidance System in Luxembourg – Introduction
In light of national and European developments in the area of guidance (European Lifelong Guidance Policy Network and the resolutions of 2004/2008) a national guidance forum was set up in 2008, whose mission was to propose a coherent concept of lifelong guidance based on individual development and not on selection, separation or matching.
In order to improve the coordination of guidance services, the Luxembourg Guidance Forum recommended in 2010:
- the creation of a national Guidance Centre (Maison de l’orientation) which would also act regionally while delivering a complete guidance service on a national level only;
- the definition of a structure gathering all the political stakeholders and professionals concerned by guidance matters, and whose mission would be to advise and coordinate the services offered by the Guidance Centre;
- the development of an elementary quality service to be provided by all guidance counsellors.
In 2012 the national Guidance Centre opened. Since March 2015, a legal bill relating to the organization of the Guidance Centre and the coherence of educational and vocational guidance has been on its way. Projects concerning the implementation of the future law are being discussed on a political level and by practitioners.
Key services of the Guidance Centre
The Centre gathers in a single-access point all the government authorities and services in charge of assisting people in shaping their career paths:
- Action locale pour jeunes (ALJ) / Local action for youngsters. The ALJ offers individual guidance in drawing up and carrying out a professional project, during the transitional phase, between school and the labour market.
- Cellule d’accueil scolaire pour élèves nouveaux arrivants (CASNA) addresses the needs of young immigrants between 12 and 17, who have only recently come to Luxembourg and who want to continue their studies in secondary education.
- Centre de Psychologie et d’Orientation Scolaires (CPOS) / Centre for Educational Psychology and Guidance. The CPOS provides guidance interviews and offers educational, psychological and psychotherapeutic support for young people and their families.
- Service d’orientation professionnelle de l’Agence pour le développement de l’emploi (ADEM-OP) / Vocational Guidance Service of PES. This service body offers job guidance interviews and information sessions for young people and adults on how to choose an appropriate job. This service is in charge of apprenticeship placements for youngsters and adults.
- Service National de la Jeunesse (SNJ) / National Youth Service. Through its regional offices the SNJ offers concrete opportunities for young people to gather practical experience in voluntary service projects.
There is another important Information Centre located in the Ministry of Higher Education and Research, the Centre de documentation et d’information sur l’enseignement supérieur (CEDIES) / Centre for Documentation and Information on Higher Education. This Centre offers advice and information on higher education in Luxembourg and abroad. It also offers financial support such as grants and loans to eligible students.
On a local level, there is a guidance service in every secondary school: Service for Educational Psychology and Guidance. A team of psychologist(s), social worker(s), educator(s) and teacher(s) offer career guidance, psychological support and psychotherapy to students (post-primary education) and their families.
Furthermore teachers and social pedagogues from the Action locale pour jeunes – ALJ (Local Action for Youngsters) are working in the preparatory section of secondary schools in order to prepare and accompany the pupils’ transition from school to apprenticeship or the labour market. On a regional level and outside schools, ALJ also offers a personalised accompaniment of young people during the transition period between school and work, as well as support in the realisation of educational/vocational projects for young NEET (young people not in employment, education or training). For example: short internships for guidance purposes.
ADEM-OP also offers individual and collective consultations in vocational guidance on a regional level for youngsters and adults who are looking for an appropriate profession or training.