The European Commission calls for recognition of school diplomas and school periods abroad!

The European Commission is proposing to put in place a “European Educational Area” by 2025, to harness the full potential of education and culture in Europe. Recognition of school diplomas/study periods abroad are in the agenda!

In Communication “Strengthening European Identity through Education and Culture”, prepared as a contribution to the EU Leaders’ meeting on 17 November 2017 in Gothenburg, the European Commission provides six key policy suggestions that aim to create a Europe in which learning, studying, and doing research would not be hampered by borders.

One of these policy suggestions proposes to work on a Council Recommendation on the mutual recognition of higher education and school leaving diplomas/study periods abroad. In its additional document “Mutual recognition of diplomas“, the Commission indicates May 2018 as the time point to publish the proposal for a Council Recommendation.

We fully supports the European Commission’s vision of a European Education Area and we welcome in particular the above-mentioned policy suggestion.

Via our campaign #RecogniseStudyAbroad, we have raised awareness of the fact that in many Member States school-students need to attend additional year(s) of school, once back in their home country. We believe that a Council Recommendation could represent an important instrument to address this issue, but only if the Recommendation covers also the recognition of study periods abroad that do not result in school diplomas. Many pupils are mobile during school years that do not foresee the attainment of a qualification, and they should not be penalised for that. Moreover, we call for a system based on the principle of mutual recognition within the “European Educational Area” rather than on a complicated credits’ system, like in the Bologna process.

We look forward to the promising next steps towards a “European Educational Area”, where recognition of mobility of all learners is a reality.

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