The EU’s new long-term budget for 2021-27, coupled with Next Generation EU is the single largest investment in the history of the European Union. Its core programme, the Recovery and Resilience Facility, is aimed at helping the EU economy recover from the pandemic crisis and foster an economic transformation that meets the targets of the green transition, the digital transformation and the resilience and inclusiveness of European societies. The general framework is set at the European level, while the concrete policies of investment are developed and implemented by the Member States. However what is often lacking in both, is a clear commitment to invest in the one strategic sector that will ensure the long-term transformation of our societies: Education.
As highlighted in a report by Civil Society Europe1, the lack of transparency and participatory design of the National Recovery and Resilience (National Plans) phase is also a reason for alarm. This is especially true for Student Councils and Unions, Youth Organisations and Civil Society Organisations in general, who in many cases have been on the frontline of the Covid-19 emergency, addressing the gaps in Member States’ capacity for emergency response.
We believe that for these investments to be effective, thorough consultation of the different stakeholders of the education community is paramount, both for designing and for implementing the measures.