The ETUCE Bureau confirmed its unwavering solidarity with the Independent Trade Union of Primary Education Workers of Bosnia and Herzegovina (ITUPEWBH) following a fact-finding mission on 13-15 February 2019. In the wake of this mission, the Office of the Prime Minister of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (FBiH) had circulated a letter to the ILO, ITUC, the EU-Delegation to the FBiH and Friedrich Ebert Stiftung in BiH, containing false information about the statement of the European Director which she gave at the press conference during the ETUCE mission in Sarajevo in February 2019.

In 1979, the first of its kind in Germany AG Schwule Lehrer (Berlin gay teachers’ group) created by ETUCE member organisation GEW in 1978, succeeded in persuading the national education authorities to abolish the law which previously had allowed the dismissal of homosexual teachers. This March, the GEW is widely celebrating this and many other achievements of the ground-breaking group.

Education trade unions should raise awareness about the interconnection between the work-life balance arrangements and gender pay and pension gaps and promote working time models which cater for teachers at different stages of their lives. This conclusion was reached by the participants of the final regional seminar of the ETUCE project Social dialogue and gender equality: Empowering education trade unions to address gender equality in the teaching profession through social dialogue, which took place in Munich on 28-29 March 2019.

A high-level conference entitled “The Nordic Way – Early Childhood Education & Care” was organised on 26-27 March, 2019 in Oslo in cooperation between the Ministry of Education of Norway and Norwegian trade unions, supported by the Nordic Council of Ministers. The participants were policy makers and teachers from 47 countries.

Finnish education trade union, OAJ, has recently published a report entitled “Solutions for Europe”, in which it outlines its goals for future European policy and suggests twenty-five solutions to improve the current state of affairs. In light of the upcoming European parliamentary elections and the Finnish Presidency, due to commence in July 2019, OAJ has chosen the election theme #educationisthesolution (#koulutusratkaisee) to highlight the focus that should be placed on education to ensure a successful, democratic and equal Europe.

ETUCE is pleased to announce that the registration for the online course on Citizenship and Human Rights Education for Change, is open now. This research and training initiative is free of charge. The 6 weeks course takes place from 29 April until 9 June 2019, and offers teachers, school leaders, other education personnel, and education employers, an opportunity to acquire knowledge and skills in teaching and learning about democratic citizenship, human rights and inclusive education.