30 Years After Introduction, the European Union’s Erasmus+ Program Holds Strong

According to a recent press release by the European Commission, the Erasmus+ program is expected to benefit from increased funds in 2018. Funds are projected to increase by about eight percent from 2017, amounting to an increase of approximately 200 euro. Total funding will fall around 2.7 billion euro.

Erasmus+ was introduced 30 years ago by the European Union, as a part of a framework of goals to be met by 2020. Erasmus+ specifically deals with education, training, youth, and sport. It has been successful in providing opportunities, especially to those who are socially, economically, physically, or geographically disadvantaged.

In addition, the program supports educational exchange programs for youth. This gives students the opportunity to study abroad to gain valuable education or training.

Specific areas of focus for this 2018 increase in funding will include promoting mobility opportunities, improving the relationship between education and the career field, providing reform through proper research and communication, and supporting transnational sport projects.

Erasmus+ will also, as it has in the past, support social inclusion, intercultural knowledge, and promotion of European values and identity.

According to Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth, and Sport, “…every euro invested in Erasmus+ is an investment in the future of a young person and of the European Idea”.

Scotland is an example of a country that has greatly benefitted from the success of Erasmus+. Scotland recently received about 21 million euros in funding. This money will go directly toward supporting 159 Scottish organizations. Over half of the funding will go to universities, with the remaining cash distributed amongst schools, vocational training organizations, youth work organizations, and adult education organizations.

Some fear that Brexit will jeopardize the Erasmus+ program in the UK. The European Union may no longer provide funding for the important educational programs that fall under Erasmus+. This concerns many students and members of academia.

The Erasmus+ program is under the scope of the European Union’s Education and Training sector. This sector of the European Union focuses on a framework of educational goals under the classification of Europe 2020 targets. Its main objectives are covered each year in the Education and Training Monitor publication.

The Education and Training Monitor relies on many sources, in order to provide a comprehensive report of European Union Education policies and areas in need of reform. The Erasmus+ funding increase will surely be a focus of the next Monitor.

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