MEPs adopted two legislative reports in the field of education. The first report relates to lifelong learning where MEPs welcome the creation of a European frame of reference for key competences offering EU citizens a tool to adapt to an evolving labour market in a knowledge based society. The second report relates to the creation of a quality charter for student mobility. Both reports were adopted in first reading after agreement with Council.
Parliament adopted a report with an overwhelming majority Helga TRÜPEL's (Greens/EFA, DE) on lifelong learning for all EU citizens. Although this concept of lifelong learning is gaining ground, too few adults were participating. Consequently, national strategies should be urgently implemented in all Member States, MEPs said. Parliament, Commission and Council have a common view on the importance of lifelong learning and by adopting a range of compromise amendments expressing this, a second reading in co-decision can be avoided.
MEPs welcome the creation of a European frame of reference for key competences offering EU citizens a tool to adapt to an evolving labour market in a knowledge based society. The main aims of this proposed Reference Framework are to identify the key competences necessary for personal fulfilment, active citizenship, social cohesion and employability. Member States' work should be supported on ensuring that by the end of initial education and training young people have developed the key competences to a level that equips them for adult life. Adults should be able to develop and update throughout their lives.
Communication not only in the mother tongue, but also in foreign languages mathematical competences, science and technology as well as digital competences (am 66) were considered as being of high importance, as were social and civic competences.
Parliament also highlighted issues such as knowledge of contemporary events (am 71) and a sense of initiative and entrepreneurship. Finally, cultural knowledge and expression were essential as a solid understanding of one's own culture and a sense of identity could be the basis for respect and open attitude to diversity of cultural expression.
Quality charter for student mobility
Parliament agrees, with the European Commission and with the Community's Education Ministers, that is it time to introduce a European Quality Charter for Mobility in Education. In adopting the report by Christa PRETS (PES, AT) Members said that, with a million of young people having lived in another Member State as part of their students, student mobility not only helps to promote an active European citizenship, but also was very important in making an innovative and competitive knowledge-based society.
Following a joint agreement and thus avoiding a second reading, the three EU institutions are now recommending the Member states to adopt and to use the European charter and to encourage its use by their National Agencies. Several compromise amendments were adopted on more technical issues of the Charter such as on language skills adequate logistical support as well as on the portability of government grants and loans from to country of origin to the host country.
Given the fact that EP, Commission and Council could reach agreement on the Charter, a second reading in co-decision can now be avoided.
Source: EP Press release