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Education ministers to save Europe from the economic downturn

Gathered in Prague, on 22-23 March 2009, for an informal meeting under the auspices of the Czech Presidency, education ministers from the 27 EU member states, the countries of the European Economic Area and the candidate countries had put together 'Eight Key Points for the Recovery of Europe from the Perspective of Ministers Responsible for Education'. Unsurprisingly, the only way out of the current economic crisis, in the eyes of the above-mentioned education officials, is investing in the human resource through education and training. The more concrete steps to be taken in this respect can be summarised as follows:

1) Effectively using the existing resources and maintaining or increasing investments into education and training;
2) Focusing on skills and key competences supporting people’s employability, flexibility and adaptability;
3) Fostering entrepreneurship and promoting creativity and innovation;
4) Developing dialogue and cooperation with social partners, particularly with employers and enterprises;
5) Strengthening the role of education from the perspective of the knowledge triangle and its connection to research, development and innovation;
6) Promoting lifelong learning and supporting further education and retraining;
7) Supporting social cohesion, active citizenship and the sense of social responsibility; and
8) Promoting European cooperation in education and training.

For a more detailed presentation of the eight action lines, consult the official website of the Czech Presidency.