Thursday, November 29, 2012

The EC's "Rethinking Education" strategy is out

The EC has its "Rethinking Education" strategy out since last week. You can find the communication and related documents in this link:

What you also should look at it the Country Analysis. If I'm right, a little bit of my work is included in the analysis from Finland. One of my independent expert assignments this year was to write a long report on that, which was, most likely, used as a material for this piece of work. It's a nice feeling to be part of a big strategy report like this one ;)

A few highlights from the communication below. 

  • Developing the competences of teaching staff is a continuing and increasingly urgent priority in all Member States. A completely new generation of teachers is ready to take over and a completely new set of skills are required from them. 
  • It is essential that Member States create flexible options, such as high quality distance learning. Widening access and engagement through Open Education is a necessity. Technology will play a crucial role in this. 
  • Apprenticeships are one very effective way to do this and I urge all Member States to develop more work-based learning schemes. 
  • In particular, I support and welcome the initiative by EU Ministers of Education to boost cooperation to increase both the quantity and quality of work-based learning. The first steps will be taken at a meeting of EU Education Ministers in Berlin next month.
  • Foreign language skills are especially important in times of crisis as they can open up new opportunities. That is why we are proposing a new benchmark on foreign language competences. 
  • We shall also develop guidelines for entrepreneurship education at all levels including schools, universities and vocational education and training. This will encourage education institutions to develop more entrepreneurial approaches in areas including leadership, teacher development as well as curriculum delivery.

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