In a panel “Do teachers have the blues? The civil society’s point of view” representatives from the European Trade Union Committee for Education (ETUCE), the European Federation of Education Employers (EFEE), the European Economic and Social Committee and CESI exchanged views on the future of the teaching profession, the challenges that lie ahead and the attractiveness of the profession.
In his introduction, Secretary General Klaus Heeger underlined: “Education of our children is the most important and challenging task in the world, and we hand over to teachers what matters most in our lives: our children. Despite all challenges and shortcomings, teachers should have tremendous professional pride. They deserve our deepest respect and appreciation”.
The Education Summit highlighted the need to further invest in education and teachers, to fight precariousness, to improve working conditions and, last but not least, to call for the appropriate appraisal of the profession. Trust, autonomy, empowerment, participation, sufficient time resources and support mechanisms were identified as key.
Against the major challenges identified, demographic changes and the professional and societal impacts of the digital transformation, many speakers underlined the need to recruit (and retain!) sufficient qualified and motivated young teachers.
In this context, the recently adopted CESI “Manifesto for the Teaching Profession” established the following demands:
– Social recognition of the teaching profession
– Professional stability
– Decent remuneration and standard of living
– Basic minimum conditions for professional practice
– Access to professional training and development
– High-quality basic and continued training
– Professional mobility (encouraging and promoting the value of experience and stays in foreign countries)
– Recognition of diplomas and professional experience
– Consultation and participation in decision-making procedures
“It is now time that, beyond trade unions and professional associations, teachers find overall societal support; by media, politicians, parents, pupils and the youngsters, “Klaus Heeger concluded his intervention. “To have chosen ‘Teachers first!’ as motto for the 2nd Education Summit reflects these ambitions!”
Programme and videos from the 2nd European Education Summit.
Video – Closing remarks from CESI SG Klaus Heeger at the end of the 2nd European Education Summit.