Council Education, Youth, Culture and Sport May 2019

The Council adopted conclusions on young people and the future of work. In order to address problems such as insecurity and precarious working conditions, the conclusions propose the following measures:
 - adaptable and responsive education and training systems
 - the promotion of lifelong learning
 - smooth school-to-work and work-to-work transitions
 - equal access to quality jobs for all young people in the future

Ministers also adopted a resolution establishing guidelines on the governance of the EU Youth Dialogue. The Youth Dialogue, involving youth organisations, decision makers, experts and researchers, will contribute to the overall objectives of the EU Youth Strategy through:
 -encouraging the participation of young people in democratic life in Europe
 -promoting equal participation of young women and men
 -including diverse voices and ensuring that all young people are able to contribute to policy-shaping

The Council held a policy debate entitled 'Young people as agents of democracy in the EU'. The debate took place ahead of the upcoming European elections, but also in the context of a number of elections taking place in 2019 in different EU Member States.

Ministers adopted a recommendation on a comprehensive approach to the teaching and learning of languages. The aim of the recommendation is to explore ways of helping all young people to acquire competences in two other languages in addition to their mother tongue/first language.

Ministers also adopted a Council recommendation on high quality early childhood education and care systems. The aim of the recommendation is to support Member States in their efforts to improve the accessibility and quality of their early childhood education and care systems, whilst recognising that Member States are primarily responsible in this area.

The Council adopted conclusions on the implementation of the Council recommendation on upskilling pathways: new opportunities for adults. The conclusions recognise the progress achieved at national level and call on the member states to:
 - put in place sustainable long-term measures for adult upskilling and reskilling
 - adopt a coherent strategic approach to basic skills provision for low-skilled and/or low-qualified adults
 - raise the awareness of employers, particularly SME's, of the importance of upskilling and reskilling and of available support mechanisms for adult skills development.

Based on a presidency discussion paper, ministers held a policy debate entitled 'Building the future of Europe: the contribution of education and training to strengthening social cohesion'. The aim of the debate was to reflect on concrete future steps in the development of the European Education Area by 2025, with particular emphasis on strengthening social cohesion.