The European Platform for Investing in Children (EPIC) presents a round-up of the latest developments in child and family policy in EU member states in October 2020. Each piece of news contains a link to the original source, which may be in a language other than English. In most cases, they are press releases from the relevant ministries.
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Denmark: Strategy for working with private foundations supporting vulnerable children
The ministry with responsibility for social affairs (Social og Indenrigsminister) introduced a new funding strategy that sets out how the ministry will work with private foundations who support children through their work. The strategy aims to promote knowledge-sharing and cooperation between civil investors, civil society actors and other public sector organisations with the goal of making social funding more efficient.
Denmark: New bill on inclusion of disadvantaged children in care centres and primary schools
The ministry with responsibility for social affairs (Social og Indenrigsminister) introduced a bill that aims to improve the inclusion of children with disabilities into early childhood education and care (ECEC) and schools. The ministry intends to strengthen existing anti-discrimination rules.
France: Review of implementation of strategy for prevention and children protection
The ministry with responsibilities for children and families (Ministère des Solidarités et de la Santé) released a report that provides an update on progress towards implementing the 2019 National Strategy for Prevention and Child Protection (La Stratégie nationale de prevention et de protection de l’enfance). The report provides information on the steps taken towards implementing the strategy over the past year: including measures aimed at improving partnership policies, harmonising and strengthening rights for all children, and reforming policies around adoption.
Germany: New law proposed to protect children online
On 14 October 2020, the federal government approved a revised law on the protection of minors. Proposed by the federal ministry with responsibility for family (Bundesfamilienministerium), the law aims to better protect children from risks found on the internet (including sexual harassment and cyberbullying) and to provide standardised age ratings for films and games. The bill now passes to the federal parliament (Bundestag) and, if approved, will enter into force in spring 2021.
Greece: New programme of free school meals for selected schools
The ministry with responsibility for education (Υπουργειο Παιδειασ Και Θρησκευματων) has introduced a free school meals programme in primary schools for the academic year 2020-2021. In order to qualify to offer these free school meals to their pupils, schools need to fulfil certain criteria, such as being in a deprived area, or having a large number of pupils at risk of poverty. All pupils in the selected schools will receive free meals.
Slovakia: New project against bullying in schools
The ministry with responsibility for education (Ministerstvo Školstva, Vedy, Výskumu A Športu) has become a partner in a new project that aims to tackle bullying. Called ‘We will respond’ (Odpíšeme ti), the project was launched on 5 October 2020 by the ministry and two national foundations: Markíza Foundation (Nadácia Markíza) and Child Safety Line (Linka detskej istoty). As part of providing direct support to victims and promoting public discussion about the issue, the project offers personalised help to children via a special helpline (116 111) and via a new website.
Spain: Report on remote educational activities implemented during COVID-19
The ministry with responsibility for education (Ministerio de Educación y Formación Profesional) published a report setting out the educational response to the COVID-19 outbreak. The report describes various policies and initiatives that were launched by the ministry between March and September 2020 in order to encourage and support remote learning. One example is the web portal ‘Learn from Home’ (Aprendo en Casa) which was developed to bring together educational resources, online training, and tools and apps for teachers, families and students.
European Union: Release of Gender Equality Index 2020
On 16 October 2020, the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) released the fifth edition of the Gender Equality Index. The thematic focus of the 2020 edition investigates the effect of digitalisation in the lives of men and women and considers the impact of intersecting inequalities. The Gender Equality Index also examines gender equality in the domains of work, money, knowledge, time, power and health.