EU Benchmarks - Education and training

EU benchmarks

Education and Training 2020

"Education and Training 2020" (ET 2020) was the strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training up to 2020. In February 2021, the Council agreed on a new strategic framework and set new EU-level targets for monitoring progress. 

For ET 2020, 8 benchmarks had been defined for monitoring progress through 2020.

Benchmark Data Source

Adult participation in learning

An average of at least 15% of adults should participate in lifelong learning.


Low achievers in basic skills

The share of low-achieving 15-year-olds in reading, mathematics and science should be less than 15%.


Tertiary educational attainment

The share of 30-34 year-olds with tertiary educational attainment should be at least 40%.


Early leavers from education and training

The share of early leavers from education and training should be less than 10%.


Early childhood education

At least 95% of children between the age of 4 and the age of starting compulsory education should participate in early childhood education.


Employment rates of recent graduates

The share of employed graduates (20-34 year-olds) having left education and training 1-3 years before the reference year should be at least 82%.


Learning mobility in higher education

An EU average of at least 20% of higher education graduates should have had a period of higher education-related study or training (including work placements) abroad, representing a minimum of 15 ECTS credits or lasting a minimum of three months.

Partial data available (see data folder 'Learning mobility') Eurostat/

Learning mobility in initial vocational education and training (IVET)

An EU average of at least 6% of 18-34 year-olds with an initial vocational education and training (IVET) qualification should have had an IVET-related study or training period (including work placements) abroad lasting a minimum of two weeks, or less if documented by Europass.

No data available  


Partial data are available for the benchmark on learning mobility in higher education. First estimates of the benchmark can be found in the technical report by the Joint Research Centre (JRC). No data is available for the benchmark on learning mobility in initial vocational education and training (IVET).

Abbreviations used:

Eurostat/EU-LFS: EU Labour Force Survey
Eurostat/UOE: UNESCO-OECD-Eurostat data collection on education systems statistics