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Viladecans, Spain

  • City population: 
    65,549
  • City/Urban area: 
    20.04
  • Population Density: 
    More than 500 inhabitants per km²
  • GDP - country: 
    USD$ 25,685
  • Average number of years of schooling: 
    9.8

Learning: an investment in the future

Viladecans is a large town located just outside Barcelona on the Mediterranean coast between El Prat de Llobregat and Gavà. It is primarily a service-based town. It has a hospital that serves the surrounding area, as well as 13 or 14 schools and 30 to 40 sports teams representing the municipality in football, basketball, baseball, softball, gymnastics and other sports.

Vision and Motivation

Viladecans’ desire to be seen as a Learning City stems from its conviction that education is a political and strategic priority, and the basis for progress. Although the city is not directly responsible for its education budget, it nonetheless invests millions of Euro each year in the belief that to invest in education is to invest in the future.

Challenges and Goals

Offering education throughout life, from birth to adulthood (through a network of Adult Education Centres) creates a citywide culture of lifelong learning. The city also strives to increase collaborations between the stakeholders involved.

Plan and Implementation

The Local Social Inclusion Plan has initiated projects such as a library network and workshops to create ‘clean air’ zones. In 2010, it sought to expand the use of learning technologies by installing digital blackboards in all educational centres. The Network of Educational Innovation – an initiative run jointly by the municipality, local educational centres, families and businesses – has implemented a number of innovative technological projects.

The Municipal Centre for Economic Development organizes programmes to increase job quality and workers’ professional qualifications. To encourage family and community learning, a programme for mothers and fathers has been in place since 1996 to help parents raise and educate their children.

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