Culture, Education, Youth and Sport Council
Ministers to deliberate on common approaches
By Eric van Puyvelde | Wednesday 18 May 2011
The contribution of culture to implementation of the ‘Europe 2020’ strategy, youth volunteer work, student mobility and the work plan for sport are some of the key items on the agenda of the quadruple session of EU ministers in charge of culture, youth, education and sport, to be held on 19-20 May in Brussels. General approaches will be sought on most of these subjects, since the policies concerned are largely the competence of member states.
A ‘social policy’ session will be held on the morning of 19 May (see separate article).
The Council will open, at 14:30 on 19 May, with a session on culture chaired by Hungary’s Junior Minister for Culture Géza Szöcs. The ministers are expected to reach political agreement on a decision establishing an EU action for the European heritage label. The Council will adopt conclusions on the contribution of culture to implementation of the 2020 strategy. A discussion is planned on mobility information services for artists and cultural professionals and the Council is also expected to adopt conclusions on this subject. The Council will likely designate the city of Plzen (Czech Republic) as European Capital of Culture 2015.
The session will be preceded by a lunch during which the audiovisual policy and culture ministers will discuss the future of the CULTURE and MEDIA programmes beyond 2013.
The ‘youth’ session will begin at 18:00 and will be chaired by Junior Minister for Social Affairs, the Family and Youth Miklós Soltész. First, though, during the morning, there will be a meeting of the informal forum that brings together the presidency of the Youth Council, the enlarged troika (Belgium, Hungary, Poland and Denmark) and representatives of European youth organisations.
The Council will adopt a resolution on promotion of new and effective forms of participation by all young people in democratic life. The Presidency will present the outcome of the first 18-month cycle of work (1 January 2010-30 June 2011) of the structured dialogue with young people on employment and the Council is expected to adopt a resolution on this subject.
In a debate open to the public, the ministers will discuss youth volunteer activities and their contribution to the development of local communities in the framework of the European Year of Voluntary Activities (2011).
A dinner will be held with the social partners to debate education issues, with the participation of Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou (education) and a representative of the European Parliament.
The session on education will begin at 10:45 on 20 May after a working breakfast for the education ministers. It will be chaired by Hungary’s Junior Minister for Education Rózsa Hoffmann. The Council is expected to reach political agreement on two recommendations, one to promote youth mobility for education and training, the other on reducing early school leaving. The ministers will hold an exchange of views on prevention policies to combat school drop-out among the socio-economically disadvantaged, including Roma. The Council is expected to adopt conclusions on early childhood education and care.
The sport-related issues will be debated at the session opening at 15:00 and chaired by Attila Czene, state secretary for sport. The high-level structured dialogue with representatives of the world of sport will be held at lunch with the participation of the competent ministers from the enlarged troika.
The Council is expected to adopt a resolution on an EU work plan for sport 2011-2014. The ministers will also hold a public debate on aspects related to online sports betting.