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Meeting of the Education, Youth, Culture and Sport (EYCS) Council

15.02.2013 - 15.02.2013

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The Education, Youth, Culture and Sport Council (EYCS), deals with European Union policies on a wide range of issues. These include teaching and dissemination of languages, improving knowledge of the culture and history of the EU, encouraging mobility of students and teachers, vocational training to integrate citizens into the labour market, and stimulating artistic and literary creation. It works to complement Member State policies in this area. Depending on the items on the agenda, Member States are represented by their Ministers for Education, Culture, Youth, Communication or Sports. It is chaired by the rotating Presidency (i.e. Ireland for the first half of 2013).

On the Council's website you can find information on all Council meetings, including the agenda, background note, and webcasts of all open sessions. We will livestream press conferences on this website's press centre, and add images and videos of the event, and press releases, to this page.

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Marcella Smyth, Press Spokesperson-COREPER I

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EU Education Ministers adopt conclusions on rethinking education

15.02.2013, 13:00 GMT


BRUSSELS, 15 February - The Irish Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn TD, chaired the EU Council of Education Ministers in Brussels today. In response to the European Commission’s recent communication on ‘Rethinking Education’, European Education Ministers adopted Conclusions on "Rethinking Education: Investing in skills for better socio-economic outcomes" and the 2013 Annual Growth Survey. The Minister also gave an update on negotiations on a successor programme to the Lifelong Learning Programme.

The Commission communication calls for a reorganisation of European education and training systems so that they can provide the right skills for today's world, particularly in a context of persistently high levels of youth unemployment across the EU. The 2013 Annual Growth Survey, which launches the six-month cycle of economic policy coordination in the EU, the "European Semester", was also addressed in the Council conclusions.

Minister Quinn updated his European colleagues on the progress of negotiations on a successor programme to the multi-billion Lifelong Learning Programme, part of the Multi-annual Financial Framework from 2014-2020.

The importance and relevance of the Union's action in the fields of education, training and youth, particularly in these tough economic times, cannot be underestimated.”

Agreement on this Programme by the Council and European Parliament during the Irish Presidency means that preparations can begin in good time to enable the Programme to enter into force, as scheduled, on 1 January 2014.

Speaking in Brussels today, Minister Quinn said:

“Agreement on the Programme marks a significant step forward. Given the popularity and success of the current Lifelong Learning, Youth in Action and other existing programmes, the importance and relevance of the Union's action in the fields of education, training and youth, particularly in these tough economic times, cannot be underestimated.”

Renowned film maker and Chancellor of the Open University Lord David Puttnam and OECD deputy director for Education Andreas Schleicher were guest speakers at today’s meeting during the debate on “Education & Skills for Jobs, Stability and Growth”. 

This was the first of two Education Council meetings to be held under the Irish Presidency, the second will be in May.

A number of legislative priorities in education have been identified for the course of the Presidency: 

 

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Contacts

Marcella Smyth, Press Spokesperson-COREPER I

T:

M:

E:

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