The priorities of Portugal's presidency are driven by its motto: ‘Time to deliver: a fair, green and digital recovery’.
The presidency programme focuses on five main areas, which are in line with the goals of the EU’s strategic agenda:
• strengthen Europe’s resilience;
• promote confidence in the European social model;
• promote a sustainable recovery;
• speed up a fair and inclusive digital transition;
• reaffirm the EU’s role in the world, ensuring that this is based on openness and multilateralism.
For the ninth consecutive year, the Education and Training Monitor gathers a wide range of evidence to indicate the evolution of national education and training systems across the European Union.
The report measures countries’ progress towards the targets of the Education and Training 2020 (ET 2020) strategic framework for European cooperation in these fields. It also provides insights into measures taken to address education-related issues as part of the European Semester process.
The Monitor offers suggestions for policy reforms that can make national education and training systems more responsive to societal and labour market needs.
Furthermore, the report helps to identify where EU funding for education, training and skills should be targeted through the EU's next long-term budget, the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF).
The Monitor comprises a cross-country comparison and 27 in-depth country reports.
Commissioner Mariya Gabriel announced the 2020 Education and Training Monitor at the DigiEduHack conference on 12 November 2020.
The 2021 Commission work programme sees a shift from strategy to delivery across all six political priorities. It confirms the Commission's resolve to lead the twin green and digital transition – an unparalleled opportunity to move out of the fragility of the crisis and create a new vitality for the Union.
In several priorities, there is a direct reference to education and training.
The Communication on the DEAP was launched on the same day the Commission launched the Communication on the European Education Area. At the same time, the DEAP is presented as one of the actions under the EEA.
The Digital Education Action Plan (2021-2027) outlines the European Commission’s vision for high-quality, inclusive and accessible digital education in Europe.
The European Education Area seeks to foster cooperation between European Union (EU) Member States to further enrich the quality and inclusiveness of national education and training systems.
The European Education Area ties in with Next Generation EU, the EU's COVID-19 recovery plan to lead the Union out of the crisis and towards a modern and more sustainable Europe fit to face the digital and green transitions.
It aims to develop a holistic approach to EU action in education and training to create a genuine European space of learning, which benefits all learners, teachers and institutions.
On 23-26 May 2019, more than 200,000,000 voters in 28 EU countries went to the polls to elect the members of the European Parliament. The new president of the Parliament is David Sassoli (Italian Partito Democratico). He is elected for a period of 2.5 year.
They in turn voted on 16 July 2019 to elect Ursula von der Leyen as president of the European Commission. She put a team together based on nominees from national capitals - commissioners-designate - whose competence and abilities MEPs examined in a series of parliamentary committee hearings from September to November 2019. On 27 November 2019, the European Parliament approved the new European Commission headed by Ursula von der Leyen.
Mariya Gabriel (Bulgaria) will be responsible for education, within a larger portfolio (Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth).
The four priorities were presented by Prime Minister Andrej Plenković at a conference entitled ‘A strong Europe in a world of challenges’, held on 30 October 2019 in the National and University Library, the central venue of the Croatian Presidency of the Council of the European Union:
- A Europe that develops
- A Europe that connects
- A Europe that protects
- An influential Europe.
On 28 November 2019, the Finnish presidency and the incoming Croatian presidency published a roadmap outlining the key steps of the 2020 European Semester.
On 18 December 2019, the Council received the European Commission's autumn package of documents for the 2020 European Semester. The autumn package kicks off the annual cycle of economic governance coordination. It sets out general economic priorities for the EU and provides EU countries with policy guidance for the following year.
The priorities for Finland’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union were to strengthen common values and the rule of law, to make the EU more competitive and socially inclusive, to strengthen the EU’s position as a global leader in climate action and to protect the security of citizens comprehensively.