Exchange Programs for Early School Education Teachers in Europe: Fostering Mentorship and Professional Development

May 3, 2024  •  7 min read

The landscape of early school education in Europe is enriched by various exchange programs designed to enhance the professional development of educators. Among these, the Erasmus+ program stands out as a significant contributor to fostering cross-cultural educational experiences and mentorship among teachers.

Erasmus+ Program: A Gateway to International Teaching Experiences

Erasmus+, a renowned EU program for education, training, youth, and sport, provides extensive opportunities for teaching assignments at schools abroad. This initiative caters to professionals involved in pre-primary, primary, and secondary school education, offering a platform for educators to gain broader perspectives on pedagogical approaches and educational systems across different countries​.

Key Features of Erasmus+:

  • Teaching or training assignments can range from a minimum of two days to up to one year, excluding travel time, providing flexibility to accommodate various professional needs and schedules.
  • Schools must apply for an Erasmus accreditation or participate in a short-term mobility project for their staff to be eligible. Individual teachers cannot apply directly but are selected by their respective schools or consortium coordinators​​.
  • The program offers EU grants to cover travel and subsistence costs and organisational support for participating institutions.
  • Special provisions and additional funding are available for staff with physical, mental, or health-related conditions, ensuring equitable access to international teaching experiences​.

The exchange programs under Erasmus+ are not just about geographical mobility but also about exchanging knowledge, teaching methodologies, and cultural insights. Such programs are instrumental in promoting mentorship among teachers, where experienced educators can share their expertise with peers from different backgrounds, fostering a culture of continuous learning and professional growth.

Erasmus+ Teacher Academies: Nurturing Educational Excellence

In addition to individual teaching assignments, the establishment of Erasmus+ Teacher Academies marks a significant stride in promoting excellence in teacher education. These academies organise various activities, such as creative teaching fairs, policy discussions, and round-tables, to share best practices and formulate educational policy recommendations​​.

Highlights of Erasmus+ Teacher Academies:

  • Focusing on critical areas like digital skills, inclusive teaching strategies, and STEM education.
  • Building networks among education providers, schools, teacher associations, and other stakeholders across Europe.
  • Contributing to educational policy changes at both national and European levels through well-researched recommendations.

Exchange programs like Erasmus+ play a crucial role in shaping the future of early school education in Europe. By providing platforms for international experience, mentorship, and professional development, these programs not only enhance the skills of individual educators but also contribute to the collective advancement of educational standards across Europe.

For detailed information on how to apply, eligibility criteria, and funding rules, consult the Erasmus+ Programme Guide or inquire within their school to discover if these opportunities are available.

To learn more about the Erasmus+ program and its offerings for teachers, you can visit the 

This Blog is prepared for the dissemination of the E-mentorship for (E)quality in Early Childhood Education (2022-1-TR01-KA220-SCH-000086684) project granted by the Erasmus+ Program.