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Maltese Presidency of the EU engages in inclusive education

Malta took over beginning of the year, The Presidency of the Council of the EU, from predecessor Slovakia, and in line with Malta’s top priority and competences in Migration, the motto for education in this round is: ‘Inclusion in Diversity’.

The priority areas for education outlined, at the very end, of the National Programme of the Maltese Presidency include:

  • Quality and relevance of education linked to labour market needs
  • Provision of relevant skills and life long learning values supporting active citizenship
  • More inclusive education systems and a move away from a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to greater flexibility, and customisation to diverse learning styles
  • Modernisation of education, facilitation of transitions between different education paths as well as the world of work.

A meeting of the - High Level Group (HLG) on Education and Training (November 2016) marked the start of the Presidency and gathered officials of the 28 Member States to share their views on education priorities. Discussions focused ways to carry forward The Commissions New Skills Agenda for Europe (adopted June 2016) and ET 2020 strategic objectives, paved the way for the education related events-series of the Presidency, as well as the adoption of dossiers in the first semester 2017.

The thematic series of events in fields of education, science and youth launches with the ‘Education Week’: starting 16 January, a forum is held with the theme “Leadership Policy for Equity and Learning: Take it to the students” (16/17 January);  followed by a joint Peer Learning Activity of two ET 2020 Working Groups (WG); the Modernisation of Higher Education WG and the Digital and Online Learning WG (18 January). The ‘Week’ concludes with the conference: “The State of Digital Education: Engaging with connected, blended and open learning” (19/20 January) , taking stock on current thinking and best practices. March takes forward issues in Higher education with a Meeting of Directors General for Higher Education (DG HE) , and the role of culture with the conference: Cultural Diplomacy: Fostering International Cultural Dialogue, Diversity and Sustainability

Europe’s smallest member will take on large challenges facing the union, including Migration, the Single Market, Security and Social Inclusion. While the inclusive motto reflects timely and urgent questions in education, it remains rather small on the priority list this time round. What place education will take in the next presidency, will emerge when Estonia takes over in July 2017.

Programme of The Maltese Presidency of The Council Of The European Union