European Council Recommendation on a comprehensive approach to the teaching and learning of languages
Language skills are at the heart of the ambitious vision to create a European Education Area. Being able to speak foreign languages is not only a skill needed for studying abroad, but also on increasingly international job markets. Learning languages enables people to both discover foreign cultures and to broaden their perspectives.
After negotiations between the European Commission and EU Member States, the Council Recommendation on a comprehensive approach to the teaching and learning of languages was adopted by Education Ministers at the Council meeting in Brussels on 22 May 2019. The Recommendation aims to:
- boost language learning by the end of compulsory education by focusing on achieving specific competence levels, based on the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR);
- introduce into education and training the concept of language awareness, which provides an inclusive framework for language learning taking into account individuals’ language skills;
- ensure that more language teachers have the opportunity to learn and study abroad;
- identify and promote innovative, inclusive and multilingual teaching methods using tools and platforms at the EU-level, such as the School Education Gateway and eTwinning.
The Council welcomed the European Commission's intention to "strengthen cooperation with the Council of Europe, and the European Centre for Modern Languages, in the field of language learning to enhance innovative methods in teaching and learning of languages and increase awareness of the crucial role of language learning in modern societies".
Bucharest Declaration on the role of culture in building Europe’s future
The EU Ministers of Culture adopted the declaration within the framework of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union during their informal meeting on 16 April 2019.
Among others, they acknowledge "the need to ensure a holistic and strategic approach to cultural policies at EU and MS level in order to highlight the diversity and wealth of Europe’s cultures and languages, the vitality and sustainability of the European cultural and creative sectors, as well as a shared cultural heritage creating a sense of common belonging to the EU". They believe that promoting linguistic diversity will facilitate the circulation of works, ideas and knowledge across Europe and beyond. And they emphasise the importance of EU support for the mobility of artists and of cultural and creative professionals, as well as for the cross-border exchange of artistic and cultural works. They believe that this helps promote cultural cooperation and exchanges, intercultural dialogue and language skills.
Full version of the Declaration
Press release of the Informal Meeting of the Ministers of Culture in Bucharest (16 April 2019)
Vocational mobility in Europe: analysing provision, take-up and impact
Brussels statement on multilingualism: multilingual communication, a vehicle to bring international organisations closer to the citizens
The dictionary "EU terms in English to Finnish" is very useful when you need to find the translation of EU words and expressions in English and Finnish. It contains words and expressions from all policy areas, but also more general language.
Vocational education and training systems in Europe at a glance
Can adult learning create active citizens?
Recommended annual instruction time in full-time compulsory education in Europe – 2018/19
School Education Gateway
Watch the webinar on "Literacy skills", recorded on 30 April 2019 with Christine Garbe, Universität zu Köln, to gain an overview of the required literacy instruction in schools, and how teachers can prepare themselves for introducing these skills in their classrooms.
Watch the webinar "Teacher vs. game - who is the real game-changer?", recorded on 28 May 2019 with Daniela Hau, to learn more about how to get the best out of games in classrooms, and what are the benefits games have for both teachers and students.
Watch the webinar "Social and emotional learning - Fostering skills for today’s classrooms", recorded on 11 June 2019 with Carmel Cefai, Rita Arundel, Kelly Roberts et Lisa Greenough, to learn what social and emotional learning (SEL) means for both students and teachers in the classroom.