President von der Leyen opens the 3rd European Education Summit

Hosted by the European Commission, the 3rd European Education Summit is taking place today. President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, delivered the opening address paying tribute to teachers, who since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic have strived to keep classrooms open digitally giving pupils the opportunity to continue learning. This year’s summit is dedicated to the ‘Digital Education Transformation’. In her speech, President von der Leyen said that the pandemic “also exposed the shortcomings that need to be tackled. We have to successfully integrate digital technologies in our education systems. Digital technologies enable many pupils to continue learning. But for others it proved to be a major barrier when access, equipment, connectivity or skills are lacking.” She made reference to the Digital Education Action Plan recently presented by the Commission, which seeks precisely to boost teachers’ and pupils’ digital skills, as well as to develop the related infrastructure. The President highlighted the ambitious but doable targets proposed for the European Education area and spoke about how NextGenerationEU can help the education sector. Finally, she welcomed the new ‘Education for Climate Coalition’: “With this coalition we want to bring some of the energy from the streets to all our class rooms. We want to mobilise the entire education community to support the goals of climate neutrality and sustainable development.” Read the full speech online.