On 29 January 2018, the Steering Group of the European Sectoral Social Dialogue in Education (ESSDE) meeting in Brussels kicked off a new working period of the ESSDE (2018-2019) by successfully adopting a new Work Programme listing the themes of mutual interest to be addressed jointly by the ESSDE partners across the next two years.

Based on discussions held during the ESSDE Plenary meeting of 23 November 2017, EFEE and ETUCE adopted a new Work Programme for the year 2018-2019. This new ESSDE Work Programme reflects the commitment of the European education social partners to deepening their dialogue as central in particular to implement the right to quality and inclusive education for all, as stated in the European Pillar of Social Rights. The Programme can be considered as a timely, ambitious, and comprehensive document, tackling a wide array of issues crucial to the improvement of the education sector in all EU countries such as: the attractiveness of the teaching profession faced by teacher shortages to be addressed with the aspiration of transforming the teaching profession into one based on professionalism and teamwork, as well as on quality jobs and employment conditions, contractual status, career prospects and reward including fair pay; the impact of open and innovative trends on education and education investment patterns including privatisation and commercialisation trends. Sector-specific topics such as Quality Vocational Education and Training and Apprenticeships, and Higher Education and Research are also to be addressed in the next two years. As a continuous task for the ESSDE partners, ETUCE and EFEE are working jointly on social dialogue capacity building. Additionally, specific projects have been kicked off looking in particular at migrants and refugees integration in education, psychosocial risks and work-related stress, and inclusive education and democratic citizenship.

On the adoption of the Work Programme 2018-2019, ETUCE European Director Susan Flocken commented: ‘The good work achieved by the ESSDE Committee since its creation in 2010 has resulted in meaningful joint outcomes and growing mutual trust. The new Work Programme is a proof of the progress achieved, but also a commitment to further cooperation between trade unions and education employer organisations across all the EU to effectively improve our education systems, both for the professionals working in the sector and for society.’

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To read the new Work Programme 2018-2019, please click here.