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Erasmus for All: 5 million in line for EU funding
Brussels, 23 November 2011 - Up to 5 million people, almost twice as many as now, could get the chance to study or train abroad with a grant from Erasmus for All, the new EU programme for education, training, youth and sport proposed by the European Commission today. Among them would be nearly 3 million highereducation and vocational students. Master's degree students would also benefit From a new loan guarantee scheme set up with the Eur pean Investment Bank Group. The seven-year Erasmus for All programme, which would have a total budget of €19 billion, is due to start in 2014.
EAEA statement about Erasmus for All
EAEA therefore has these main proposals:
·        Adult Education and Learning has to remain a sector of its own. It is desirable that there are close links with vocational training, but nevertheless a distinct stream for non-formal and non-vocational adult education is necessary in order to tackle the challenges mentioned above.
·        While we appreciate the proposed increase in budget, we understand that there is a high possibility that this increase will not be approved by the member states. As a consequence, the current minimum allocation would actually mean a decrease for adult education. We therefore need a minimum allocation that enables progress for adult learning in Europe! The 2% for Adult Education is completely inadequate in view of the demographic ageing of Europe and the need to increase the participation of adults in lifelong learning and therefore at a very minimum this should be increased to 7% like schools and youth.
Hearing European Parliament on Erasmus for All“All current programmes within the Lifelong Learning Programme must be treated equally in the new education programme Erasmus for all”. This was the general statement made by Doris Pack as rapporteur for Erasmus for all in the European Parliament. According to Pack, all programmes are “Erfolgsgeschichten” with high yield instruments on which we should continue building the future programme. In addition, the EP Hearing on Erasmus for all gave the opportunity for some experts from higher education, school education and the youth sector to voice their opinion. All agreed that changes must be made to the European Commission proposal for Erasmus for all, but the question ‘How to do this?’  appeared to be difficult to answer.
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30 Stakeholders on Erasmus for All
All sectors should be given equal importance: EU programmes give a positive impulse and are complementary to the work that is done at national, regional and local levels in all the sectors – secondary and higher education, vocational education and training, non-formal education and adult education. All the target groups from the current programmes should have adequate opportunities to continue to receive EU support. For instance, the transnational mobility of primary and secondary students, of adult learners should be promoted together with that of higher education and vocational training students and of young people involved in non-formal activities (article 7.1(a)). Clear mechanisms that will guarantee this equal access, for example by planning to allocate a certain proportion offunding to the various target groups, should be mentioned in the Regulation itself. It will ensure that small organisations – which are primarily found in the school, youth work and adult education fields – have opportunities to participate alongside bigger institutions. Appropriate indicators should also be defined for each target groups (article 5). Finally,internationalisation should concern all the sectors (article 8) and not only higher education.Furthermore, the structure needs to be clarified in order to ensure that the programme is tailor-made for each learner group.