What are PONs and how to present them

PON is an acronym, which indicates “National Operational Program”, used to refer to projects related to the world of education and specialization, financed through additional funds made available by the European Union.

The program of the Ministry of Education, University and Research contains within it the strategic priorities of the school sector and is designed to help create a high quality education and training system, which is also fair and effective. This is why it offers schools the possibility of accessing community resources which are in addition to those already provided for by the “Good School”.

What is a PON

As mentioned i single PON they are projects financed with European funds from various sources, which will be seen below, aimed at creating “a high quality, effective and equitable education and training system”.

To be able to access these financing it is above all schools to invest in both structural improvements and training. Although they are a possibility for different realities, teachers who do not want to be part of it are not obliged to participate in the PON, even when the school or structure in which they work uses them.

The funding in question is part of the European plan to promote social, employment and economic equality between the different areas EUthus decreasing the differences.

The budget

The budget for the PON 2014-2020 overall it exceeds 3 billion euros and is divided into:

  • About 2.2 billion from the European Social Fund (ESF). These funds are aimed at the training of both teachers and pupils, including adults, and are intended to facilitate and encourage skills for growth. These funds are specifically intended for the fight against unemployment and are intended for social interventions. Often they take the form of professional retraining courses or for the creation of jobs and are aimed at people at risk of exclusion from the world of work;
  • 800 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), intended to support laboratories and learning environments, therefore to improve services and infrastructures. In Italy these funds often take the form of aid designed for specific territories, as in the case of the southern regions.

Despite being funds from European fundingthese are not provided directly to the interested parties, but pass through third parties, such as the state or regions with the aim of providing them to stakeholders in different forms, such as specialized courses designed for specific categories.

The objectives of the NOPs

The PON is divided into four acesand therefore has four different objectives linked to the field of education and the improvement of infrastructures.

  • Instruction: therefore aims to invest in the skills of the people involved and in the creation of permanent skills;
  • infrastructure for education: funds must also be used for the creation, improvement, and enhancement of educational, technological, and equipment infrastructures in general;
  • institutional and administrative capacity: this point concerns the institutional capacity and the promotion of an efficient Public Administration (such as a national evaluation arrangement or the training of managers and officials);
  • technical assistance: this last point relates to the ability to improve the implementation of the program in question and the management of funds, through support services, evaluation, and publicity and information.

How to participate

Across the special portal you can stay informed about all the news about it. As previously mentioned, however, not all projects are available for the whole national territory or for every type of reality, and for this reason it is the State that take care of the delivery funds to the regions or entities concerned.

Schools wishing to access funding they have to draw up a plandefining it in its entirety, and then sending it through the GPU platform suitable for the purpose, where it will also be possible to check in advance the requests to be satisfied. At this point the institute will be able to proceed with the uploading of the project, which will be evaluated and ordered within the appropriate ranking, used for theorganization implementation of projects.

Once the project should be approved and, therefore, implemented, its development in all its parts will always be under careful monitoring and evaluation, to check the correct management of the funds received and the effective implementation of the proposed plan.

During the different phases different professional personalities are involved, including the head teacher and the tutors and experts who take care of giving the lessons. School-related NOPs specifically must be aimed at stimulating school attendance, training teachers or staff, improving equal opportunities, or promoting development, for example.

The final purpose of the projects must always fall within the characteristics expressed through the objectives of the PONs previously, and therefore have the aim of forming and facilitating social inclusion, allowing a better insertion into the world of work for the people involved.

What are PONs and how to present them