On Wednesday, 7 February the President of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, Marc Cools, visited the European Centre for Modern Languages together with Inge Hannon from the Current Affairs Committee and Klaus Starl and Livia Perschy from the International Centre for the Promotion of Human Rights at the Local and Regional Levels under the auspices of UNESCO.
The discussions focused on highlighting the political importance of language and culture and the ECML’s key contribution to “language education at the heart of democracy”, the title of its recently launched 4-year programme. Possible future cooperation initiatives were also discussed, such as in the area of Regional and Minority Languages (following the Centre’s successful colloquium on this theme in November 2023).
This meeting marked the first in a series of events designed to put the ECML’s work in language education in the political spotlight in this double anniversary year, 2024, marking 30 years of the ECML and 75 years of the wider Council of Europe:
- On 8 April an event for Austrian local and regional politicians who will be welcomed by Doris Wagner, Head of General and Vocational Education of the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research, Aloisia Wörgetter, Austrian Ambassador to the Council of Europe and Styrian Regional Councillor, Werner Amon, former Vice-President of the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly.
- On 3 May a conference of the European association of former members of parliament of the member states of the Council of Europe (FP-AP) will be held at the ECML. The President of FP-AP is the former Council of Europe Secretary General, Walter Schwimmer.
- On 16 May, the ECML Executive Director will address Austrian elected representatives at the prestigious Regional Parliament (Landhaus).