In Hamburg, Berlin and Lower Saxony, the German far-right extremist party “Alternative for Deutschland (AfD)” has recently introduced so-called registration portals to report AfD-critical teachers, allowing the denunciation of AfD-critical teachers.  Similar platforms have been created in other countries, e.g. The Netherlands, which  jeopardise critical discussions of political-related content and, in some cases make them impossible. GEW recommends its members to  push back these developments and  show commitment to universal values and freedom of opinion instead of restraint - with regard to the demand of the AfD to students and parents to expose teachers on online reporting platforms.

Yesterday, on 17 October 2018, on the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, trade union organisations staged the national protest action in Kiev.As reported by the Trade Union of Education and Science Workers of Ukraine (TUESWU), thousands of trade unionists joined the action to express their strong resentment over increasing consumer prices and common charges  at the same time demanding to increase salaries and pensions and take into account trade unions’ proposals to the State Budget 2019.

In light of the forthcoming protest action, which is to take place on 20 October 2018 in Zagreb, ETUCE expressed its strong support with its member organisations and the whole trade union movement speaking up for fair pension reforms in Croatia.The Croatian Government has refused to negotiate the pension reforms with trade unions, questioning the government’s goodwill and intention to commit to the European constitutional framework and agreements as well as the principles of the European Pillar of Social Rights (EPSR) promoting, among other things, social dialogue.

The Eurydice article Does It Matter if Men Don't Teach?, published 17th September 2018, presents some well-known facts: only 15% of primary school teachers in Europe are men and just 25% of lecturing positions are held by women in European universities. Few men work in Early Childhood Education and primary and secondary schools characterised by low salaries and lack of prestige. Indeed, this epitomises the issue of undervalued work, that is considered unattractive and underpaid in a sector where the highest percentage of employees are women.

The EU Code week between the 6th-21st October, is a grassroot initiative focusing on using fun and engaging measures for everyone including teachers, students and the elderly, to gain coding and digital literacy skills. This week is aimed at expanding one’s knowledge on how technology works and to develop the relevant skills to formulate new innovative ideas. Ways to get involved in this week are: to organise an activity to motivate others, joining an activity or through spreading the word so that others can learn more about Code Week.

Today, 11 October 2018, together with different stakeholders partners of the Platform on the implementation of the Sustainable Goals (SDGs) in the EU, ETUCE has addressed the present and future leaders of the European Commission and other EU institutions, all players having a strong stake in people’s sustainable living, and in the environmental, social, economic and governance developments of Europe, to develop and to implement a visionary and ambitious Strategy for a Sustainable Europe by 2030.