National Support Services - Malta

National Support Services - Malta


Ministry for Education and Sport


    The Directorate for Research, Lifelong Learning and Employability

    The Directorate for Lifelong Learning is responsible for three main areas: the Adult Learning Unit, the Early School Leavers Unit and the Research Unit. In August 2014, the previously separate Early School Leavers Unit became part of the Lifelong Learning Directorate to ensure further complementarity between the two areas and maximisation of resources.

    The Directorate is guided by a vision that lifelong learning empowers citizens through more personalised and innovative approaches to education. The Directorate offers policy guidance and organises courses to improve people’s experience of learning. It aims to ensure that there are learning benefits for individuals, communities, employers and society.

    The Directorate has the mission to increase participation in adult learning and to address the imbalances in participation to achieve a more equitable state of affairs. It is responsible for the selection, recruitment and placement of adult educators within its different centres, namely the 8 evening classes centres, the Lifelong Learning Centre in Msida (LLC) and courses offered at community level.  

    Through this Work Programme the Directorate for Lifelong Learning aims to play a key role in disseminating information about EPALE amongst adult learning stakeholders in Malta. The project will ensure that the development of EPALE is relevant to the specific needs and circumstances of the Maltese adult learning community and that this interactive space opens opportunities for meaningful and innovative exchanges with European partners. This connecting and sharing of content is particularly relevant when considering the island context and the need to network with the international adult learning community.


    The EPALE NSS in Malta will build on progress to date and continue improving the quality and impact of adult learning through the following priorities:

    • Support the general implementation of EPALE by working closely with the CSS
    • Implement the communication strategy  to widen participation of adult learning in Malta, to increase the number of visits, registered users and engaged users on EPALE
    • Contribute a number of unique, diverse and high quality material content on the platform on a monthly basis
    • Support the animation and social sections of the platform
    • Update the NSS pages as per exigencies of the project
    • Support the multilingual aspect of the platform

    Target groups

    The main target group will be service providers, educators and trainers in the public and private sector. Policy makers, educational intuitions, researchers, employers, Ministries and local councils will also be targeted so as to ensure that a variety of professionals get to know about the platform.

    Main Activities

    • Training of NSS staff  including media/social skills training and job shadowing
    • Promoting the platform to target group through a communications strategy
    • Online and offline communication with relevant target groups active in the adult learning sector through EPALE discussions, webinars, demonstrations, presentations
    • Copywriting, translating and proof reading unique and high-quality content from Malta
    • Liaison with EACEA, CSS, the National Agency in Malta and the coordinator for EU Agenda in Malta

    Main Outputs

    • Number of Maltese visitors, registered users and engaged users on EPALE
    • Number of likes on the Facebook page Adult Learning in Malta and other social media
    • Number and quality of events and presentations organised by NSS Malta
    • Number of publications and media coverage in national media
    • Number of participants in EPALE local events
    • Number and quality of content uploaded by registered users from Malta
    • More interest in digital media usage and digital resources by Maltese adult educators
    • More interest in Maltese content by international stakeholders

    EPALE Malta - Directorate for Research, Lifelong Learning and Employability

    Darlene Schembri is the Project Manager of EPALE at the Directorate for Lifelong Learning. She has a BA (Hons) in International Relations and a Masters in European Public Affairs. She started working on EPALE since July 2021. 

    Tom Borg is a Project Manager at the Directorate for Lifelong Learning. He has an academic background in Music and Philosophy. He has been working on EPALE since July 2020

    Maruska Grech is a project coordinator and administrator at the Directorate for Lifelong Learning and is responsible for administration of adult education recruitment, classes and activities organised by the Directorate. She is involved in event organisation and procurement procedures.

    Massimo Scerri is an administrator at the Directorate for Lifelong Learning and is responsible for administering the National Funds. He is an IT Professional and a teacher.

    Natasha Fabri is a Project Officer at the Directorate for Lifelong Learning. Natasha has been involved in adult learning for over 20 years, specifically in the English language learning sector.

    Adult Education in Malta

    Eurostat data for 2012 states that 7% of the Maltese population aged 25 to 64 is participating in education and training. Malta's Lifelong Learning Strategy 2020 recognises that there a need to make a significant effort in the immediate future to meet EU 2020 targets and to encourage more adults to engage in learning.

    The Ministry for Education and Employment (MEDE) published the draft lifelong learning strategy on 30 October 2014. This was adopted as final in December 2014.The strategy addresses a number of challenges including:

    1. Low level of adults participating in adult learning;
    2. Early school-leavers and low skills achievement;
    3. Low number of women actively at work or engaged in lifelong learning;
    4. Persistence of low education passed on from generation to generation; 

    The strategy is guided by the following objectives:

    1. To stimulate participation in Lifelong Learning;
    2. To place the learner at the centre;
    3. To improve skills sets;
    4. To develop support structures;
    5. To improve governance;

    There are a number of stakeholders involved in adult learning in Malta these include:

    Jobsplus focuses on enhancing employability by recommending policies and implementing initiatives aimed at empowering, assisting and training jobseekers. ETC facilitates their entry or re-entry into the active employment market, promoting workforce development through skills and competency development, and by assisting employers in their recruitment and training needs. Basic skills courses are also offered.

    For more information visit:

    Malta College of Arts, Science & Technology (MCAST) provides Vocational Education and Training through ten Institutes, Pathway Programme and the Gozo Centre. The Pathway to Independent Living Programme provides an opportunity for applicants with mild to moderate intellectual disability in possession of the school leaving certificate to follow a structured programme of study focusing on the individual students’ needs. The Learning Support Unit (LSU) offers support to students who have no formal qualifications or who do not have the required levels of Maltese, English, Maths and IT basic skills. The Inclusive Education Unit (IEU) ensures that learners with particular needs including disabilities and/or learning difficulties are given the necessary support for their studies.

    For more information visit:

    Institute of Tourism Studies (ITS) is an institution of higher education aimed at meeting the changing needs of the Hospitality and Tourism Industry. A number of courses (from level 1 to level 6) related to the hospitality industry are offered. Level 1 qualification covers Key Skills for Independent Living and Employment in the Hospitality Sector while Level 2 covers the ESTS Apprenticeship and a Foundation Certificate in Hospitality Trades.

    For more information visit:

    The National Commission Persons with Disability (KNPD) is committed towards inclusion within the Maltese society, in a way that persons with disability reach their full potential in all aspects of life including lifelong learning while enjoying a high quality of life thanks to equal opportunities. In fulfilling this mission, KNPD works in order to eliminate any form of direct or indirect social discrimination against persons with disability and their families while providing them with the necessary assistance and support.

    For more information visit:

    The University of Malta has fourteen Faculties, sixteen Institutes and nine Centres of Studies including a Centre for Literacy and a School of Performing Arts. It also offers a postgraduate Master of Arts course in Adult Education. There are some 11,000 students including over 650 international students from 77 different countries following full-time or part-time degree and diploma courses.

    For more information visit:

    The Union Ħaddiema Magħqudin (UHM) aims to unite workers into one strong homogeneous body, to enhance the dignity of the workers and to improve the conditions of work as well as their economic and social standing.

    For more information visit:

    The European Union Programs Agency (EUPA) is an agency that supports Maltese individuals and entities in availing themselves of funding under the various educational programs provided by the European Commission. As of 2014 EUPA is coordinating the implementation of the Erasmus+ funding program and of 2017, EUPA is also coordinating the implementation of the European Solidarity Corps (ESC).

    For more information visit:



    Ministry for Education and Sport

    Directorate for Research, Lifelong Learning and Employability

    Great Siege Road




    +356 2598 1121