EAEA News 2006-02-27
Austria has declared the following intentions in the area of Education for its EU presidency term:
73. In a knowledge-based society, the quality and efficiency of education systems is a fundamental prerequisite for social cohesion, active citizenship and the achievement of higher growth and more jobs in Europe. One of the priorities of the Lisbon Strategy is to continue promoting these strategic goals in the area of education .the Austrian Presidency will draw up the "Second Joint Interim Report 2006" on the basis of the 27 national interim reports on "Education and Training 2010", and will endeavour to deliver a condensed version to he European Council in March 2006.
74. The Austrian Presidency intends to broker a common position in the negotiations in the Council and with the European Parliament on the new integrated European education programme "Lifelong Learning" (which depend on agreement on the EU budget). This new programme combines a range of programmes within a common programme structure, including the Comenius programme (school education), Erasmus (higher and further education), Leonardo da Vinci (vocational training), Grundtvig (adult education), the transversal programme and the Jean Monnet programme. Moreover, national strategies for lifelong learning will also be developed further under the Austrian Presidency. Lifelong Learning should not just be restricted to education and training; the EU´s "Youth in Action" programme also offers many opportunities outside the school environment for informal and non-formal (further) education. These include exchanges between young people and cross-border voluntary services. A decision is likely to be taken under the Austrian Presidency so that this can enter into force at the beginning of 2007.
The promotion of mobility through the European Quality Charter for Mobility and the development of the European Qualifications Framework is an important topic. This will considerable improve the transparency of Member States´ education systems and facilitate mutual recognition of qualifications. Other priorities for the Austrian Presidency include the European Indicator of Language Competence as well as the promotion of key skills required by all citizens for their personal development, social and professional integration and development of entrepreneurial skills in a knowledge-based society.