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Adult Learning Policy Achievements (2007-2010) and future perspectives

17 November 2011
Martina N Cheallaigh DG EAC: Adult Education and Grundtvig

Action Plan on Adult Learning Main aim: increase participation


Benchmark 12.5% of 25-64 year by 2010 E&T 2020 raised benchmark to 15% Focus: those who are disadvantaged because of their low literacy levels, inadequate work skills and /or skills for successful integration into society

Effects of national E&T reforms on adult learning


LLL strategies: Integrated approach, involving multiple stakeholders European tools and their emphasis on learning outcomes
EQF/NQFs Key competences

Modernisation of schools - AL compensatory literacy, second chance also for ELS VET and HE
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Improve the quality of adult education provision


QA underpins transparency and mobility 10 years developing in HE and VET EQAVET applicable to CVT, hence adult ed. Small providers wary of over-zealous control Improved information & better understanding of staff competences and training needs Grundtvig in-service training and exchanges
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Increasing the possibility for adults to go one step up


Most work & progress done on this priority Concentration on disadvantaged groups Inventory of good practice in 33 countries Guidelines promoting what works: multiple actors, learner centred, embedding, zigzag route - cycle of guidance, quality staff, assessment Literacy & numeracy foundation skills for other key competences and job skills
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Speeding up the process of assessing & recognising non-formal and informal learning
EU Guidelines to encourage implementation 2009 Updating European Inventory 2010
Impact of NQF development, developments in voluntary sector, applied to the AL profession, low uptake

Not a stand alone solution but does work for disadvantaged groups Acceptance requires a new culture of learning may come with job/career transitions Supported by Adult Education Survey evidence
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Improved monitoring of the adult learning sector


Adult Education Survey a step forward at EU level Countries conscious of the need but cost of action a problem Monitoring at national level necessary for virtuous chain: data collection, evaluation and impact assessment, feedback to reforms Data on financing sources and spending urgent Core terminology in 28 languages Core data proposal: adult skills, participation in adult learning, professional development of teachers and financing of adult learning Great expectations from PIAAC

Staff Working Document: Overall assessment and impact on the sector


Structured EU level cooperation on adult learning established Requirements for an efficient adult learning sector defined, but work is in its infancy Action Plan as a useful reference for staying on track vis--vis other Member States, defining national strategies, reforms, etc. PLAs, workshops, regional meetings and good practices generated highly appreciated
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Reasons to continue
Countries find it helpful to have a common reference with milestones for cooperation and exchange Give a vision for adult learning by 2020 Europe 2020 contribution to economic recovery, sustainable and inclusive growth
Agenda for new skills and jobs Platform against poverty Innovation Union Headline targets early school leavers, tertiary education

Place in the context E&T 2020 and propose working methods for EU cooperation on adult learning, 2012-2014

Council Resolution on a European Agenda for Adult Learning


ET 2020 strategic objectives: Lifelong learning and learning mobility Improve the quality and efficiency of provision and outcomes Promote equity, social cohesion and active citizenship Enhance innovation and creativity including entrepreneurship Improving the knowledge base and monitoring
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What will be the new elements?


Raising awareness among adults about skills Learning later in life to promote active, autonomous and healthy ageing Developing new skills necessary for active participation in modern society; Fostering solidarity between different age groups, between cultures and people of all backgrounds Greater openness in higher education to adults and the community at large Designation of national coordinators
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Broader policy context


EU2020 Moment of transformation
dilemma of c. 80 million low skilled versus demand for digital and higher job-specific skills; poverty; innovation

15% LLL Benchmark downward trend since 2005 Outcomes of Action Plan point towards prioritising disadvantaged and low qualified Future agenda for Adult Learning will take up this message in Council Resolution, November 2011 High Level Group on Literacy, report in summer 2012 Recommendation on Early School Leaving, June 2011 Work in progress on validation, skills passport PIAAC results 2013 will give many countries a clearer understanding of the extent of the problem nationally

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