The European Commission, DG XIII, has published information on the calls for proposals for participation in the LEONARDO DA VINCI programme. The calls for proposals will be organized under the responsibility of the 15 Member States of the European Union or the participating countries of the European Economic Area. Each participating EU Member State and EEA country will organize and publish, in coordination with the Commission, a call for proposals at national level for projects falling under the following areas: - Strand I.1.1: "Pilot projects aiming at supporting the improvement of vocational training systems and arrangements in the Member States"; - Strand III.1: "Improving language skills"; - Strand III.3.a: "Dissemination of innovation in the field of vocational training". The Commission and each Member State or participating EEA country will ensure that an information policy is adopted so that the information about the possibilities of setting up all kinds of projects is disseminated as widely as possible with the intention of providing maximum openness in the selection process, guaranteeing complete access to all promoters, and ensuring that this information will reach those interested. The LEONARDO DA VINCI Decision foresees the establishment of priorities and an annual work programme for the Community measures. After consultation with the LEONARDO DA VINCI Committee, the Commission has established the priorities outlined below for 1995 for the Community measures under Strand I.1.1. These priorities take into account the themes in Point I.2 of the Annex of the Council Decision and the conclusions of the European Council of December 1994 at Essen in the area of vocational training, including the follow-up to the European Commission's White Paper "Growth, Competitiveness and Employment". The priorities for Strand I are the following: - The adaptation of methods and content of vocational training and the improvement in the quality and the relevance of qualifications for young people. This includes the strengthening of vocational guidance, the development of creativity, initiative, entrepreneurial spirit and a technology culture in the learning process, as well as the acquisition of core skills as the basis of lifelong learning; - The improvement of specific methods and content for groups disadvantaged in the labour market, in particular the development of possibilities for unqualified young people to acquire an initial qualification a number of years after leaving the education system (the concept of a "second chance") and the strengthening of opportunities for unqualified people or those at risk of social exclusion (owing to socio-economic, geographical, ethnic factors or physical or mental disabilities); - The promotion of vocational training and the acquisition of skills in the areas and sectors linked to new job opportunities, e.g. in the fields of the environment, health, and health and safety at work; - The strengthening of cooperation between training organizations and schools and the socio-economic players, in order to develop apprenticeship and on-and-off-the-job training systems involving practical periods of training as an integral part of training at all levels; - The development of quality in training provision. In order to support the quality and innovative capacity of systems and arrangements for vocational training, Member States or participating countries from the EEA may place particular emphasis on some of the priorities agreed in common at Community level. There are no specific priorities proposed for measures under Strands III.1 and III.3.a. The "Vademecum" and "Guide for Promoters" describe the conditions of eligibility and the criteria to be applied as well as the principles governing the granting of Community assistance. They can be obtained on request in each Community language from the National Coordination Units for LEONARDO DA VINCI in each participating country (see the text (TXT) of this news item), or from the Technical Assistance Office established to assist the Commission in the implementation of LEONARDO DA VINCI. For all information about the content and the presentation of proposals, promoters must consult the "Vademecum" and "Guide for Promoters". There they will find general information and advice to help them provide all the necessary information so that the Commission can judge the quality and value of their proposal in the context of the LEONARDO DA VINCI programme. In view of the limited resources available for LEONARDO DA VINCI in 1995, particular attention will be paid to the quality of the projects during selection. Therefore, potential promoters are asked to respect and comply strictly with the eligibility criteria set out in the "Vademecum" and the "Guide for Promoters", as well as the priorities outlined in the calls for proposals. Promoters should be aware that to facilitate the setting up of transnational partnerships to present transnational pilot projects under Strand I, it is intended that, in cooperation with the Commission, contact seminars at Community level will be organized. The purpose of these seminars is to enable potential promoters who are not yet part of a transnational pilot project to make contacts in order to assist with the preparation of transnational pilot project proposals to be submitted to the national coordination units. Proposals for Strands I.1.1 III.1 and III.3.a must be sent to the National Coordination Units for LEONARDO DA VINCI. These are listed in the text (TXT) field of this news item. The "Vademecum" and "Guide for Promoters" are also available from the National Coordination Units or from the EUROPA World Wide Web server: http://www.cec.lu.