Today, the European Parliament’s Culture and Education Committee adopted the Report on the Erasmus+ Programme authored by Milan Zver MEP. Erasmus+ is one of the most popular EU programmes as it reinforces the sense of European identity, increases employability and supports the personal and professional development of young and older Europeans.
“European programmes need to be equally accessible to all European citizens, regardless of their socio-economic background. My first goal is to make Erasmus+ the Number One programme of inclusiveness”, said Milan Zver.
The new Erasmus is, on the one hand, bringing big new initiatives like the European Universities Network, the Centres of Vocational Excellence and the DiscoverEU activities (based on the successful Interrail pilot project). On the other hand, it will improve and upgrade existing components of the programme: improved language learning opportunities, facilitated mobility for school children, mobility for sports coaches and young athletes, more focus on small-scale partnerships, and virtual and blended learning.
“I am proud of our work on the legislation for the next Erasmus+ Programme. We proposed many solutions for simplifications, we made the programme much more fair and inclusive and we have the broad support of other political groups. When we enter into negotiations with the Council and the Commission we will have a strong Parliamentary mandate which we will need if we want to keep the traditional activities of Erasmus+ in the fields of education, training, youth and sport, adding the three big new initiatives (DiscoverEU, European Universities, Centres of VET excellence) at the same time. The Parliament will have to fight for the tripling of the overall budget. This is why it is extremely important to have strong support from other political groups”, said Milan Zver.
The EPP Group secured a number of important issues: “We have ensured that the funds for higher education mobility and the Jean Monnet Programme are not cut. At the same time, we have increased the budgets for VET, adult education, schools and sports. We also reinforced the idea of European added value. We secured the traditional parts of Erasmus+ whilst refusing some proposals to limit DiscoverEU and the EU Universities programmes before these initiatives even truly start”, concluded Milan Zver.
Erasmus has been the EU’s flagship programme for education, training, youth and sport since 1987. Hundreds of thousands of young people have enjoyed living in another country, seeing how different and diverse the EU is. This makes Erasmus the most popular European programme and one of the EU’s success stories.
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 217 Members from 28 Member States