The European Union’s first ever education summit is bringing together dozens of experts from across the continent in a mega effort to devise a roadmap for improving education across Europe.

The summit is being held in Brussels today (January 25) and hosted by EU Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Tibor Navracsics. The event has gathered 18 education ministers from across the union as well as noted education professionals and experts from various industries in a joint effort to lay the foundations for a European Education Area.

The summit is a result of November 2017’s Gothenburg Summit and December’s European Council session where member states envisioned the creation of a European Education Area by 2025 and expressed their keenness to do more for education.

Under the planned theme of ‘Laying the foundations of a European Education Area: for an innovative, inclusive and values-based education’, discussions will focus on finding solution to problems education sector of Europe is facing and is likely to face. For example, participants will discuss ways how quality, inclusive and values-based education can contribute to a successful Europe; competences needed in times ahead and ways to boost basic, digital and entrepreneurial skills.

Specific panel discussion and sessions are also being organised with varied themes, such as “Excellence, autonomy and recognition, is that what teachers need?”, “How to raise quality and equity in school education? From principles to practice” and “engaging with disadvantaged pupils to ensure no one is left behind”.

There will be over twenty sessions, master classes and high-level panel discussions over all with more than 40 speakers with expertise in education and associated disciplines.

The summit host, Tibor Navracsics believes said he believed education should equip citizens, young and old, with the competences to lead fulfilling lives and build communities.

In a statement just ahead of the summit, he said, “While education is the responsibility of Member States, we need to step up our cooperation at EU level. We have to use the full potential of education to build resilient societies, create a sense of belonging and enable people to experience European identity in all its diversity”.

“To help achieve this, we want to boost language learning, ensure that your diploma is recognised wherever you are in the Union, that European universities can maximise their cooperation, and that studying in another EU country becomes easier than ever before. This is what a true European Education Area is about…”

For more details, refer to the summit website.

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