Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs, will announce that at least 20% of the 2014-2020 aid budget is foreseen for human development and social inclusion, education being a main component of it. As much as €2.5 billion will be mobilised for education, confirming it as a priority for EU development post-2015. At least €1.5 billion will go to the future Erasmus for All programme (an academic exchange programme between EU and overseas universities, which has helped pupils improve their education by gaining experience of studying abroad).
Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, said: 'Literacy is not just a problem in the developing world: in the European Union, 1 in 5 pupils and 73 million adults have difficulties in reading and writing. Raising the level of literacy is a priority, not only for the economy, but even more for the personal development of our citizens'.
Commissioner Vassiliou will also highlight a range of successful European best practices promoting literacy at the conference. Her examples are expected to draw on recommendations made by an EU high level group on literacy.
The Commissioners are also expected to emphasise the need for better quality education and more accountability, so that there is more information available locally in the countries in which the EU works on how schools are run, the resources available and their use.