“Jobs remain the best route to inclusion, but only high-quality education and a broad mix of relevant skills lead to employment”, says Tibor Navracsics, the European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport.
In an opinion piece for EurActiv Commissioner Tibor Navracsics expressed a concern for the present sate of education systems in Europe and how this reflects on the European labour market. Navracsics writes that “In a post-crisis scenario, the priority is to build a European Union of convergence, jobs and growth, with a stronger focus on employment and social performance”. The Commissioner says that we should strive for sustainable growth, improving employability, better communication between member states, and building resilience. He believes that “education is central to all of those objectives” and it is the best guarantee against unemployment and social exclusion.
As an example that education systems are not delivering as well as they should, the Commissioner points out that there are currently 23.5 million unemployed Europeans, 4.7 million of them young people, and yet, 2 million vacancies remain unfilled. In addition to that four out of ten European employers are having difficulties finding candidates with the right skills.
“My main mission is helping member states modernise their education systems and make them fit for the 21st century”, says Tibor Navracsics. He adds “This means not only the technical skills relevant to specific activities or sectors, but also the full range of transversal skills that are vital to an ever-changing knowledge economy, an entrepreneurial mindset, creativity, problem-solving, teamwork, languages and communication, for example.
Today's education is tomorrow's society.”
Read the full piece here.