ETUCE 2021 Extraordinary Conference: For an education-led recovery!


On 5 and 6 of July 2021, ETUCE will hold its online Extraordinary Conference “For an Education-led Recovery”, called for by the 2020 ETUCE Conference. The Conference will be the opportunity, for ETUCE member organisations to discuss and adopt strategies on how to address the existing and future challenges of the teaching profession in the context of the COVID-19 recovery. It will also be the occasion to formally adopt important policy documents giving ETUCE and its member organisations a solid basis to implement its programme during the current mandate.

The current crisis we are facing is affecting all levels of society. The impact of the pandemic has been seismic, creating huge pressures on workers, individuals, and communities. The education sector has been massively impacted by the pandemic. Growing inequalities among students and teachers, decreasing public funding in the sector, market mechanisms undermining quality education and social dialogue, lack of comprehensive national digitalisation programmes, as well as increasing pressure on teachers and other education personnel are among the main challenges faced by the education sector in Europe. This crisis has challenged teachers and other education personnel in unprecedented ways. They have shown resilience, adaptability, imagination and a big dose of courage to continue providing quality education to young people, helping them become citizens of a society in which the words ‘equality’ and ‘democracy’ have meaning and become reality.

It is not the crisis that will determine the future of the education sector. It is how we will rise from it that will. This pandemic offers an opportunity to further enhance trade union capacity, be innovative and smart and fight harder for trade union and human’s rights. The education sector has a key role to play in addressing the negative consequences of the pandemic and planning the recovery.

The delegates will discuss ways in which education trade unions in Europe can embrace social change in vital areas such as environmentally sustainable development, active democratic citizenship, equality and inclusion, distance education and digitalisation. The conference will also be an opportunity to address the risks of commercialisation of education, while identifying ways to strengthen social dialogue and collective bargaining. The recovery from the COVID-19 crisis is only possible if supported by a strong commitment from governments, education authorities and policymakers to both a systemic education recovery and, more broadly, an education led recovery founded upon upskilling, reskilling and training opportunities for workers affected by the economic consequences of the pandemic.

Invited guest speakers - Ms Themis Christophidou - Director-General for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture of the European Commission, Mr Andy Hargreaves - Adviser in Education to the First Minister of Scotland, Director of CHENINE, and Ms Lučka Kajfež Bogataj - Professor at Ljubljana University in Slovenia -  will enrich the discussions with their views on an education-led recovery.

The main resolutions to be adopted at the Conference concern an education-led recovery; artificial intelligence in the education sector; the role of education trade unions in Europe in addressing education and environment for social change; and the importance of campaigning for a better future for higher education and research.

This ETUCE Conference invites for debate around the core topics:

  • Recovering from the pandemic - Education, Social Change and Sustainability
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Education and Climate Change
  • ETUCE Action Plan on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • ETUCE Action Plan on Trade union renewal: mobilising the collective power of education trade unions

Join us for this ETUCE 2021 Extraordinary Conference and together, let’s build the future of education in Europe!

Useful links:

All the information regarding the 2021 ETUCE Extraordinary Conference Website can be found here

The programme can be found here

All the Conference documents can be found here

The speakers’ list is here

Watch the Conference Live Stream here

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