Spotlight on entrepreneurship: The Entrepreneurial School Awards 2017

Tallinn - Estonia, 16 November 2017

Leading European schools were honoured at a ceremony in Tallinn on 16 November for their track records of success in teaching entrepreneurship. The event was the high point of a conference organised by the Innovation Cluster for Entrepreneurship Education (ICEE) under the sponsorship of the Ministry of Education of Estonia, the EU’s presidency-in-office.

Headmasters and teachers from schools in 15 countries were recipients of this year’s ‘The Entrepreneurial School’ awards. These awards, annual since 2015, are led by JA Europe as a part of the Entrepreneurial School initiative supported this year by Siemens.

The schools scored the highest in their countries against the key indicators promoting the sustainability of entrepreneurship education: the quality of the school’s strategy, the allocation of appropriate resource, the existence of relevant teacher training, the engagement of local and business communities, and the extent of the school’s best practice network.

Stellar performance in these and other areas generated impressive metrics. In Lithuania, for example, the winning school claims a majority of teachers and 37% of students (nearly 4 times the EU average) as being actively engaged in entrepreneurship study. An Estonian school has 10 business representatives working alongside its students. An upper secondary school in Helsinki offers 14 courses in entrepreneurship. In Germany a school has close links with leading business colleges, offering school students the chance of obtaining an international diploma. As Switzerland’s Alte Kantonsschule in Aarau reminds us: “entrepreneurship is not a gene – it can be learned.”

The Tallinn event, which attracted representatives of the EU presidency-in-office, member state ministries, and leading educationists, was part of a programme of initiatives undertaken by ‘Switch on Europe!’ This is a campaign to raise awareness of the European goal, set in 2010, that every young person should have a practical entrepreneurial experience before leaving compulsory education. For more information, go to

"This is the third year of these awards. I'm so excited to see these schools produce such impressive results. Now we must encourage others to follow their lead!"  said Caroline Jenner, CEO at JA Europe


TES Awards 2017


  • BELGIUM: Virgo+, Vilvoorde
  • BULGARIA: Georgi Benkovski Secondary School, Pazardzhik
  • DENMARK: Sct Hans Skole, Odense
  • ESTONIA: Tallinn School 21, Tallin
  • FINLAND: Etu-Töölö Upper Secondary School, Helsinki
  • GERMANY: Berufsbildende Schule (BBS), Bad Kreuznach
  • ITALY: Liceo Statale "Quinto Orazio Flacco", Portici
  • LATVIA: PIKC Liepājas Valsts tehnikums, Liepāja
  • LITHUANIA: Daugų Vlado Mirono gymnasium, Daugai
  • PORTUGAL: Escola de Comércio de Lisboa, Lisbon
  • ROMANIA: Colegiul Economic Ion Ghica, Targoviste
  • RUSSIA: Lobachevsky Lyceum KFU, Kazan
  • SLOVAKIA: Stredná odborná škola, Námestovo
  • SWITZERLAND: Alte Kantonsschule, Aarau
  • UNITED KINGDOM: North Chadderton School, Oldham

More information about the schools, review the TES Awards 2017 brochure



JA Europe leads the Erasmus + funded Innovation Cluster for Entrepreneurship Education (ICEE) project in collaboration with five Ministries of Education (Finland, Estonia, Italy, Latvia, Flanders), three research institutes (Eastern Norway Research Institute, The Foundation for Entrepreneurship – Young Enterprise Denmark, and the JJ. Strossmayer University in Croatia), and five national JA organizations (in Belgium, Finland, Italy, Estonia, and Latvia).
ICEE was set up in 2014 and aims to analyse the impact of entrepreneurship education and develop a route map allowing Europe to reach the goal the European Commission set in 2010: that every young person should have a practical entrepreneurial experience before leaving compulsory education. For more information, go to

JA Europe is Europe’s largest provider of education programmes for entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy, reaching 3.6 million students in 40 countries in 2017.
JA Europe brings the public and private sectors together to provide young people in primary and secondary schools and early university with high-quality education programmes to teach them about enterprise, entrepreneurship, business and economics in a practical way.
JA Europe led the consortium behind The Entrepreneurial School, which has produced Europe’s first Virtual Guide to Entrepreneurial Learning, a practical resource designed for teachers. The handbook includes more than 125 tools and methods adapted to entrepreneurial learning, self-assessment tests, examples of good practice, and a library of documents and plans. For further information, go to

Gabriela Zidkova, Senior Operations Manager, JA Europe,
+420 577 219 085, 

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