Press release: Representing parents in Europe: the first 30 years

The European Parents’ Association (EPA) is celebrating its 30th Anniversary this year. Our November conference – co-organised and hosted by our Luxembourgish member, FAPEL -, taking place in the EU Presidency country, Luxembourg is aiming at taking stock of the state of play and highlighting some of the areas to be developed in the field of parental involvement. A Manifesto about the direction of parents’ representation for the years to come is launched at the event.

In our event we will revisit the past 30 years, present the results of two recent Europe-wide surveys on parental involvement and school costs, with special focus on the achievements of the past 15 years and give the floor to our members to share their experiences and try to find answers to our questions.


One in four children at risk of poverty in Europe

More than one in four children in Europe are at risk of poverty and social exclusion, which will have repercussions for them throughout life. On Tuesday 24 November MEPs adopted a resolution urging EU countries to boost their efforts to combat child poverty and social inequalities. The text was adopted with 569 in favour, 77 against and 49 abstentions. Check out the map for the latest statistics on child poverty.


Parents’ duties after Paris

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
Martin Luther King Jr.

Europe and many other parts of the world are shocked by the terror attacks last Friday, taking the lives of innocents in the name of extremist insanity. Our hearts are broken, like everybody else’s, and we also feel responsible for supporting our children in coping with the situation. We, parents are responsible for the safety, but also for the comfort and happiness of our children, and we are all aware that you cannot live a happy life being afraid. Thus we have to do our best to be vigilant, but at the same time provide our children circumstances that offer the possibility of a happy childhood, also ease their anxiety caused by the events rather than increasing it.


Brussels events to give civil society input on European education and youth policies

On 19th to 21st October there were opportunities for EPA and all other civil society organisations to give input on European education and youth policies. The framework for this was offered through the annual Education, Training and Youth Forum (ETYF) organised by the European Commission and an Erasmus+ Conference hosted by the S&D Group of the European Parliament. The two events provided opportunities for sharing experiences and possible also to have an impact on future policy action by European institutions. In the period of the post-Paris[1] agenda civil society seems to be an inevitable partner for the EU for various reasons.

CEDEFOP Policy Learning Forum in Learning Outcomes in VET

EPA was invited to contribute on the parents’ view on the topic of learning outcomes in a great 2-day event organised at the headquarters of CEDEFOP, in Thessaloniki, Greece at the end of September.

The event was exploring the ways learning outcomes approaches are applied in initial vocational education and training (IVET) throughout Europe. It was to be the first in a series of events that aim to open up for a continuous process of sharing and learning in this area. The PLF will focus on the following questions:
-        How are learning outcomes expectations defined and articulated?
-        What is the content and profile of intended learning outcomes?
-        Who are involved in the definition and articulation of learning outcomes?
-        Why has a particular approach been chosen and to what extent is this embedded in particular education and/or employment policies?

The forum gathered experts and other stakeholders including Social Partners directly involved in the definition, writing and review of learning outcomes for VET. This ‘hands-on approach’ was suitable for an informed exchange of experiences potentially adding substantial value to existing national policies and practices.