The Covid-19 pandemic took a heavy toll on European societies and economies. The impact that the health crisis is currently having on all EU member states, with its repercussions in the areas of employment, education and training, among others, will be felt in the upcoming months and years. In the face of an educational emergency for many learners who could not attend school classes during the hardest months of lockdown and the forecasted learning- and income-related losses for future generations, next steps in this area are pivotal for the future of European citizens and the younger generations. The recovery from the crisis calls for joint support from all actors to all areas, including education and training, to ensure that EU societies become more resilient and ready for the challenges ahead.
The recently adopted Osnabrück Declaration on vocational education and training and the Council Recommendation on VET for sustainable competitiveness, social fairness and resilience highlight that flexible, inclusive and quality VET is essential to ensure the success of the green and digital transitions, lifelong learning and sustainability in the long-term, and to tackle inequalities and social discrepancies. VET contributes to strengthen social integration and inclusion, ensuring that learners can find a path leading to personal development and employability. The combination between education and practical training is fundamental to understand and accompany current and future needs of society and the economy, while fostering a culture of education that is integral, participative and polyhedric.
The event “VET for integral and inclusive education in Europe”, jointly organised by COMECE and Don Bosco International, aims to explore the recent achievements of EU institutions and EU Member States in the field of Vocational Education and Training, in the perspective of the green and digital transitions and the changes brought by the Covid-19 pandemic. It also intends to highlight and discuss the contribution that VET providers are offering on the ground in EU countries and beyond, by providing quality vocational training, upskilling and reskilling programmes, working towards inclusive and integral education in challenging times.
The event will gather representatives from EU institutions and VET providers from Europe, in order to create a platform for dialogue and exchange on the most urgent educational issues and on the solutions that VET can offer for the future of the EU.
The event will see the participation of Ms Janine Costa, Permanent Representation of Portugal to the EU; Mr Joao Santos, European Commission; Ms Miriam Lexmann MEP, European Parliament; Mr Denis Leclerc, Association Maisons Don Bosco; Mr Paolo Nardi, COMETA Formazione and Mr Alfredo Garmendia, Centro San Viator, Redi EBI and HETEL.
The conclusions will be entrusted to Fr Miguel Angel García Morcuende, SDB, President of the DBI and General Councilor for Salesian Youth Ministry.