How can the European Commission support teachers and schools in the future?

With a view to the forthcoming Communication on the European Education Area and the update of the Digital Education Action Plan – both to be published at the end of September 2020 – Vice-President Margaritis Schinas wanted to hear the voice of school education professionals themselves.

An online discussion took place on 7 September with teachers, organisations representing teachers and teacher unions, school leaders, teacher education providers, and representatives of parents and students.

We were delighted that ambassadors of eTwinning and members of the Teacher Academy school-based case studies project were among the twelve that were selected from across Europe to give their views on behalf of the school education community.

Participants were eager to stress the importance of creativity and trust in school education. They also highlighted the importance of mentoring and peer learning, as well as gaining formal recognition for their efforts in continuing their own professional development. Participants also agreed on the need to make careers in school education more diverse and thus more attractive.

Participants also acknowledged the potential of digital learning but reminded the Vice-President of the need for equal opportunities and the role of schools as learning communities which are safe and inclusive for everyone to develop their competences.

Vice-President Schinas expressed his gratitude for the input of the participants. He recognised that the benefits of digital learning should become a right for all and that student and teacher mobility should be increased. He also acknowledged the potential benefits for education systems to harness emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence.

The Vice-President is keen to continue this dialogue with the school education community across Europe.