Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

Sectoral social dialogue - Education

Sectors of activity :

Social partners

Workers' organisations Employers' organisations

ETUCE - European Trade Union Committee for Education


EFEE - European Federation of Education Employers

Social dialogue in this sector covers:

  • early childhood education
  • primary and secondary education
  • vocational education and training
  • higher education and research
  • teaching, management and administrative staff.

There is a broad consensus that education is essential for Europe's economic vitality, driving the employability, productivity, innovativeness and entrepreneurial spirit of tomorrow's working population and that its role in creating a better and more inclusive society is of equal importance. However, even though there are significant disparities between EU countries, the latest available data (end 2015) show a worrying fall in investment in education for the 3rd year running. This jeopardises the EU's progress towards these objectives.

Professional development for teaching staff and school principals is a key factor in ensuring successful outcomes for pupils. Greater efforts must be made to attract more suitably qualified people to the profession and to combat the teacher shortages that may face many European countries in the future.

Key areas

The Committee is currently focusing on:

  • how social partners can promote civic education, intercultural dialogue and democratic citizenship
  • trends in education towards open and innovative education, including ICT
  • how social partners can help improve teachers' and school management teams' skills and working conditions
  • supporting teachers, trainers and school principals, with a focus on continuous professional learning and development
  • how the teaching profession can be made more attractive
  • vocational education and training and apprenticeships, including making VET more relevant to the labour market, and promoting the European Alliance for Apprenticeships
  • higher education and research, including the link with the labour market, mobility and gender equality
  • public-private developments in education
  • promoting social dialogue at national level, and further developing the European sectoral social dialogue
  • promoting and monitoring implementation of the outcomes of European social dialogue at national level.

Activities and meetings

Check the library entries for this sectoral social dialogue committee.

Achievements/Joint texts

Check the social dialogue texts database

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