Today, the minister Mailis Reps participated in the meeting of the council of education ministers and met Estonian translators and teachers in Brussels. She also discussed the topics of modernisation of skills with Nicolas Schmit, the Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights.
Education ministers exchanged thoughts on the circulation of brains and highlighted both positive and negative aspects of it. „The current opportunities for learning and labour mobility in the European Union are very good and contribute to the development of different competences and skills. On the other hand, it has created a situation where highly skilled labour tends to move to certain areas,“ said Mailis Reps.
Minister Reps stressed the need to find out why people want to leave their home countries and what brings them back. She noted that a high quality and inclusive education as well as various support and scholarship schemes are essential for facilitating returns. It was concluded that promoting balanced movement of highly qualified people is a challenge for the whole European Union.
During the working lunch, the discussion on climate change and environmental issues in curricula was carried out. Ministers shared experiences of their countries during the debate and agreed that it is important to raise awareness on environmental issues among general public as well as promote education that supports systemic development of environment as well as sustainable development.
The modernisation of skills was discussed with the new Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights
Minister Mailis Reps acknowledged Nicolas Schmit's plans in modernising skills. „The most necessary skill in today’s labour market is skill of learning,“ said Reps in Brussels. Estonia stands out with its significant increase in adult learners, she noted. Schmit highlighted that Estonia’s effort on developing digital skills and competences and adult education and was interested which steps has been taken to achieve such progress. The topics related to youth guarantee as well as the cooperation in vocational education and pan-European vision was discussed as a proposal is expected from the Commission in March.
Minister Reps welcomed teachers, translators and interpreters working in Brussels
In the afternoon, Mailis Reps met Estonian teachers working in Brussels’ European Schools. During the meeting, the ideas were exchanged on learning and teaching Estonian language in the European Schools system as well as current educational topics were discussed. European Schools system is an official system of educational institutions that allow education in mother tongue. Today, 226 Estonian students are studying in European Schools across Europe, of whom 160 in Brussels. In Estonia, the Tallinn European School has been operating since 2013 and has 300 students enrolled.
At the meeting with the translators and interpreters working in Brussels minister Mailis Reps expressed her gratitude for translating the official documents and speeches into Estonian thus making them available for more Estonians, and for maintaining a high level of Estonian language. During the meeting, the use of different digital solutions in translation as well as in studies were discussed.