Education International
Education International


published 22 December 2016 updated 4 January 2017

ECORYS workshop on digital skills in the workplace in Belgium

The European Trade Union Committee for Education (ETUCE) actively contributed to the meeting organised on 7 October in Brussels by ECORYS, an international company providing research, consultancy and management services.

Susan Flocken took part for EI.

Symposium on health and safety in education and in the public sector in Spain

At this symposium on 14 October, ETUCE presented the results of ‘ Social Partners promoting Decent Workplaces in Education for a healthier working life’, a project carried out jointly by the European Social partners in Education, ETUCE and the European Federation of Education Employers (EFEE). The seminar, organised in Madrid by the European Confederation of Independent Trade Unions, addressed the role of managers, trade unions and safety representatives as responsible players in the implementation of the occupational safety and health policies in the public sector in Europe.

Susan Flocken took part for EI.

European school heads’ association bi-annual conference in the Netherlands

From 19-21 October, in Maastricht, ETUCE participated in the European School Heads Association’s bi-annual conference around the theme International inspiration in education: leadership matters! Gathering education stakeholders from all levels of education, the conference focused on 21st century competences, pedagogies and leadership.

Susan Flocken took part for EI.

3RD ETUCE training seminar on the European Semester and investment in education in Italy

The third training seminar of the project “Investing in Education: Strengthening the involvement of teacher trade unions in the European Semester on education and training” was held in Rome from 20-21 October. Trade union representatives from Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Slovenia and The Netherlands explored the impact of the European Semester on national education and training policies. The ETUCE Danish member organisation and co-applicant of the project, DLF, shared its experience of active involvement in the European Semester.

Paola Cammilli took part for EI.

UNESCO European and North American regional consultation meeting on SDGS in France

As part of the EI delegation in Paris, ETUCE actively contributed to the UNESCO consultation meeting from 24-25 October.

ETUC women’s committee meeting in Belgium

From 2-3 November, ETUCE provided updates from education trade unions to the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) Women’s Committee meeting in Brussels. The meeting addressed the trade union contribution to the social rights pillar review and the work-life balance consultation by the European Commission, and the forthcoming ETUC pay rise campaign.

Susan Flocken took part for EI.

European Social Dialogue plenary meeting in Belgium

On 8 November, European education social partners ETUCE and EFEE met in Brussels for their annual plenary meeting within the European Sectoral Social Dialogue in Education (ESSDE). Topics discussed included recent trends in open and innovative education, including digital skills. The ETUCE delegates highlighted their concern about ICT being used as a vehicle for commercialisation in and of education. The changes for the teaching profession in the digital were discussed.

Three joint texts were adopted by the plenary:

·         Joint ETUCE/EFEE Statement on Promoting the potentials of the European Sectoral Social Dialogue in Education

·         Joint ETUCE/EFEE Declaration on Preventing and Combating Psychosocial Hazards in the Education Sector

·         Joint Practical Guidelines on How to Promote Joint Social Partner Initiatives at European, National, Regional and Local Level to Prevent and Combat Psychosocial Hazards in Education

The ETUCE President, Christine Blower, chaired this meeting, and Paola Cammilli and Susan Flocken took part in it for EI.

Civil Society Dialogue on the status of TiSA in Belgium

The Civil Society Dialogue on the status of the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) took place on 18 November in Brussels. Christophe Kiener, EU TiSA chief negotiator, summarised the current situation, adding that the EU has published its second revised offer. Regarding education, Kiener stressed that a more precise definition of public education has been included in the EU services offer – an amendment requested by EI. However, he advised of pressure from other TiSA Parties, New Zealand in particular, to include education into TiSA.

Louise Hoj Larsen took part for EI.

UNGEI Strategic Planning Meeting in Norway

Twenty actors working on education and gender equality, including EI, attended a strategic planning workshop for the UN Girls’ Education Initiative (UNGEI), UNGEI 2017 and Beyond, hosted by the Norwegian Development Agency in Oslo, from 21-22 November. Key points to emerge from the workshop include the following:

·         Within the current SDG landscape, UNGEI occupies an important and strategic position as advocate, thought leader and coordination mechanism for girls’ education and gender equality in education

·         To take advantage of this position, UNGEI will need to expand its role to build accountability for results in delivering on gender and education related targets in SDG 4 and 5

·         The UNGEI’s strategic agenda should focus on areas of strength, including school-related gender-based violence, gender-responsive education sector planning, and monitoring gender equality in education

·         This agenda should be expanded to highlight the gender dimensions of emerging areas, such as financing for education, education in emergencies and learning

madeleine kennedy macfoy took part for EI.

ETUC health and safety working group in Belgium

On 21 November, ETUCE actively contributed to this ETUC meeting held in Brussels.

Susan Flocken and Céline Yamaguchi took part for EI.

EQUIP steering committee meeting in Belgium

On 22 November, the partners of the Enhancing Quality through Innovative Policy and Practice(EQUIP) project met in Brussels to evaluate activities carried out in 2016 and to plan for 2017.

The partners also reviewed the study and how it might feed into the work of the Bologna process.

EI’s focus group, scheduled for 15-16 March 2017, will work on the European Standards and Guidelines 2015.

Louise Hoj Larsen took part for EI.

Conference on investment and EU funds for education and training in Belgium

On 23 November in Brussels, the ETUCE, together with other European social partner organisations, such as ETUC, EFEE and the European Centre of Employers and Enterprises providing Public Services, organised a joint conferenceentitled “ Investment and EU Funds for Education and Training – The European landscape and the role of the Social Partners”.

The meeting was also attended by various European Commission directorates and European Investment Bank representatives. It concluded that social partners have an essential role in policy decisions on skills, education and training, but have limited access to the funds to implement these policies.

Martin Rømer, Agnes Roman, and Paola Cammilli took part for EI.

EQAR Members’ Dialogue and Extraordinary General Assembly in Norway

The European Quality Assurance Register for Higher Education (EQAR) Members’ Dialogue and Extraordinary General Assembly took place on 24-25 November at the Norwegian Ministry of Education in Oslo.

This event discussed policy developments in quality assurance, EQAR’s activities, and a database of quality assured programmes and higher education institutions.

Louise Hoj Larsen took part for EI.

E?itim-Sen symposium in Turkey

On 26 November, E?itim-Sen, ETUCE’s member organisation in Turkey, organised a symposium entitled “State of Emergency, Decrees, and Struggle for Democracy” in Ankara.

Representatives of ETUCE member organisations, i.e. ETUCE Vice-President Walter Dresscher, Martin Powell-Davies (NUT/UK), Tom Erdmann (GEW/Germany), and Pavlos Antounopoulos (OLME/Greece) expressed their solidarity with Turkish colleagues.

On behalf of ETUCE, Walter Dresscher expressed ETUCE’s support to its Turkish colleagues given their difficult situation and encouraged them to continue their fight.

ETUCE Regional Conference in Serbia

At its Regional Conference in Belgrade from 6-8 December, 350 education trade union delegates from 131 national education trade unions from 48 European countries voted on a new Work Programme 2017-2020 and resolutions around the challenges facing education personnel.

Delegates renewed their call for increased public investment in and against commercialisation and privatisation of education, effective social dialogue, and for professional rights and fair working conditions for teachers and education personnel.

The newly elected ETUCE Bureau is:

President: Christine Blower (NUT, UK)


Odile Cordelier (SNES-FSU/France)

Andreas Keller (GEW/Germany)

Dorte Lange (DLF/Denmark)

Trudy Kerperien (AOb/The Netherlands)

Galina Merkulova (ESEUR/Russian Federation)

Branimir Štrukelj (ESTUS/Slovenia)

The work of Martin Rømer, ETUCE European Director from 2010-2016, was praised by the Conference. Several hallmarks of his leadership were recognised, including the initiation of the European Social Dialogue in Education.

Susan Flocken was appointed as new ETUCE European Director, and will take up her duties as from January 2017.

Documents of the Conference are available here, along with adopted resolutions and policy papers.

2016 ComNet in Serbia

Communications experts from EI’s member organisations from five continents met for the EI Communicators’ Network (ComNet) from 8-9 December in Belgrade for strategic planning and learning on everything related to communications, from geo-targeting to linking advocacy to effective messaging.