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For immediate release: 8 October 2014
Press contact: Audrey Frith, EUCIS-LLL, +32  289 32 515,

The third Education, Training and Youth Forum takes place tomorrow. The 2014 Forum entitled “Future priorities of the 2020 Strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training (ET2020)”, aims to bring together various stakeholders in order to discuss relevant key policy developments. The mid-term review of ET2020 is of particular importance, as EU institutions are setting new political priorities. The Forum also aims to help identifying concrete policy areas for the next ET2020 work cycle (2015-2017) and to serve the sharpening of ET2020 Strategic Framework’s contribution to the EU’s overall growth and jobs strategy. In the wake of the Forum, EUCIS-LLL underlines key messages from civil society for the future of learning in Europe.

Inclusive growth is clearly the forgotten pillar of Europe 2020 and should be reconciled with smart and sustainable growth. EUCIS-LLL welcomes putting education and training as one of the top priorities of Europe 2020, but admits there is a danger in narrowing education policies to economic goals. An integrated and holistic vision of learning described in the EUCIS-LLL position paper on ET2020 is of continued relevance in today’s world and a viable foundation for the rethinking of education: it should be the overall approach of the ET2020. Besides EUCIS-LLL believes that all the four strategic objectives of ET2020 are relevant, but considering the current social and economic situation in many European countries, promoting equity, social cohesion and active citizenship will undoubtedly have to be strengthened.

In the 2014 Annual Growth Survey the Commission considers that “it is essential to invest in the modernisation of education and training systems, including lifelong learning.” However, public spending in education decreased from 2000 to 2011 in most Member States (Education and Training Monitor 2013).  As the EU aims to contribute to high quality education, it will not work if our education and training systems are weakened. EUCIS-LLL calls on Member States to consider education and training as an investment in order to continue working together towards the future of learning for instance by taking it out of the balance sheet (stability pact).
EUCIS-LLL welcomes the 2014 edition of Education, Training and Youth Forum to bring together various stakeholders to debate and exchange views and practices on the future priorities in European cooperation in education and learning. We hope that the Commission, with a help of structured and well-evaluated feedback from participants, commits to follow-up in a consistent and comprehensive manner on the results of the Forum in all policy arenas to improve and underline the important work done by all participants during the conference and beyond. EUCIS-LLL would also like to stress the importance of civil dialogue as cooperation with civil society organisations can strongly improve EU policy-making and its implementation towards 2020 goals.
Notes to the editors:
The European Civil Society Platform on Lifelong Learning (EUCIS-LLL) is an umbrella association that gathers 36 European organisations active in the field of education and training, coming from all EU Member States and beyond. Currently these networks represent more than 45 000 educational institutions (schools, universities, adult education and youth centres, etc.) and associations (involving students, teachers and trainers, parents, HRD professionals, etc.) covering all sectors of formal, non-formal and informal learning. Their members reach out to several millions of beneficiaries. Download our brochure in 23 languages!
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 © EUCIS-LLL 2014