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Curricular Reform in Croatia

From EPSA - European Public Sector Award

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The Republic of Croatia wanted to improve its educational system and reach the standards of some of its European partners and so it applied for the support/project by the Structural reform support service within the European Commission (EC).


The focus of this project was on building the capacity of the Croatian trainers and coaches to support the successful implementation of the new curriculum reform which in the pilot included 74 schools and around 2000 teachers and later it included 1311 schools and approximately 35 000 teachers). The Training of the trainers First included 20 and then 80 persons but a cascading system has been developed. First, a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) roadmap was created for teachers and school leaders. This helped teachers and school leaders understand the new curriculum and create a step-by-step plan to develop the relevant professional competencies. Second, a team of international experts were working with Croatian experts to create custom-made materials that supported training and coaching. The materials were informed by international experience and research evidence, while being contextualised to meet the specific needs of teachers and school leaders in Croatia. Third, the Croatian trainers and coaches were supported by international experts to work with teachers and school leaders in pilot schools. Fourth, the Ministry of Science and Education in Croatia was supported to prepare all stakeholders for the full implementation of the curriculum in all schools.


The implementation of the Comprehensive Curriculum Reform (CCR) involved a wide group of stakeholders (individuals and organisations) at national level. The proposed Project has guaranteed that the adequate levels of consultation and communication were in place to secure buy-in and timely identification of risks. The final beneficiary of this project was the Ministry of Science and Education of the Republic of Croatia. Target groups included:

- Teacher trainers;

- Teachers in the pilot schools;

- School leaders (Headmasters) in the pilot schools.


Other stakeholders have been identified according to their degree of involvement in the experimental implementation:

- Stakeholders in the pilot schools (they were closely linked and the Action had to consider proper communication strategies to get their buy-in);

- Policy makers and wider education sector organisations (Including local authorities, Education Teacher Training Agency, Croatian Academic and Research Network (CARNet), Vocational Education and Training Agency (VET); Influencers including media, other schools not involved in the pilot, teacher training faculties, and parents.


The Ministry of Science and Education is running an additional set of related actions that contribute to the implementation of the curriculum reform as a whole. These actions are interconnected, and some had a direct impact on this project. It was clear that actions which were not structural reform (teacher training and related costs) were not eligible under this project, but the ability of the Ministry to implement those activities in a timely manner had impact on the results of this project.


The Comprehensive Curricular Reform (CCR) proposed a shift to learning outcomes focusing all efforts on students’ achievement. We understood this was a challenge to teachers who had to demonstrate the effective transformation of their teaching practice.


Regarding the expected results and activities, the project has delivered 4 result areas:

1) Framework for the training of teacher trainers, teachers and school leaders was created;

2) Training and coaching resources have been created to support the experimental implementation of the Comprehensive Curriculum Reform;

3) Local trainers and coaches have been prepared to work with teachers and leaders in pilot schools, and were supported during the experimental implementation;

4) The Ministry of Science and Education was supported throughout the experimental implementation in the analysis of findings and the decision making influencing the full implementation of the Comprehensive Curriculum Reform.


Regarding the project team, The British Council was responsible for delivering the project. The British Council co-ordinated programme resources and ensured the project was delivered to the clients’ requirements which was the Ministry of Science and education. Also, it provided contractual, technical and financial management and quality assurance, as well as a Project Director and a Project Manager based in Croatia. A Senior Project Expert was based in the UK. Quality Assurance and Account Management was provided by British Council in the UK and EU Region as per British Council pillars assessed management standards and procedures.


Award info
Award category: new solutions to complex challenges - a public sector citizen-centric, sustainable and fit for the future - european or national level
Award type: submission
Award year: 2019
Project type
Sector: Education (higher and lower), training and learning
Type of activity:
Keywords: Education, teachers, parents, children, challenge, schools
Short English description: The Republic of Croatia wanted to improve its educational system and reach the standards of some of its European partners and so it applied for the support/project by the Structural reform support service within the European Commission (EC).
Further information
Organisation: Ministry of Science and Education
Other applicants:
Homepage: https://skolazazivot.hr/
Level of government: national level
Size of organisation: >100
Number of people involved: >15
Country: Croatia
EU membership: EU member
Language code: en
Start date:
End date:


Curricular Reform in Croatia (45.806501644746575, 16.01383924484253)
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