The Lifelong Learning Week took place from the 20th to the 24th of November 2017 in Brussels and it was organised by the Lifelong Learning Platform (LLLP). For the second year in a row, the LLLWeek benefited from the partnership with the European Youth Forum (YFJ). In cooperation with other organisations, OBESSU organised two events, both held on Monday the 20th of November at the European Parliament.
The first event, promoted by the European Students’ Union (ESU) and Solidar Foundation, focused on the right to education and on the role of the European Pillar of Social Rights. The main outcomes are summarised by the reflection that young people are in general losing hope in the EU and, consequently, the European Pillar of Social Rights could be an important boost to stop this warring trend. When it comes to education, we need to think about a long-term investment. The European Pillar of Social Rights breaks the “financial” approach to education and, as our Board member Larissa Nenning said during the panel discussion, “the right to education is linked with other rights and education is a value in itself, not just related with labour market”.
The second event, organised in collaboration with the European Youth Forum, aimed at answering to the following crucial question: “Building Bridges for Quality and Inclusive Education: how to promote partnerships between key stakeholders for a more inclusive education system?”. OBESSU Board member Larissa, stressed the point that when we talk about school governance, students should have a say and they should be considered as key stakeholder in this field – nothing about us, without us! Another important aspect tackled during the debate was a general reflection quality education and how do we assess and measure quality.
OBESSU participated also in other LLLWeek events:
- The Lifelong Learning Civil Society Forum, where Civil Society organisations discussed their role as educational stakeholders, and the importance of being considered as “expert” in the field of education.
- The Taking Stock of Erasmus+. Where are we, where should we go?, focused on the Erasmus+ Programme and its future developments. Many inputs came up from the debate and, although the programme is one of the most successful European initiatives, it can be improved: starting from increasing its budget (as we claim through the #Erasmusx10 campaign); to a stronger emphasis on its accessibility and its social dimension; to a bigger support to youth organisations able to reach disadvantaged groups.
- The Speakup! On Our Watch: a tool for co-creating and exchange, focused on the On Our Watch project, that offers citizens the opportunity to see what the European Parliament has achieved since the 2014 elections. The debate was very interesting, with a lot of food for thoughts about the general perception of lack of democracy in the European institutions, or the different ways young people participate and the role of civil society in the future.
- The Impact of ICT on intercultural youth work, presented initiatives and opportunities on the topic of digitalisation and intercultural education, showing the results of the study session run by the EEE-YFU and EFIL. This conference led to the reflection on the factors to take into consideration when developing online and blended-learning intercultural programmes and in the integration of online education into the current educational content of youth work and mobility programmes.
We take this opportunity to thank LLLP and YFJ for this great event, as a fruitful space of discussion and exchange in the field of education.