Constitution of a Thematic Working Group Early School Leaving in Vocational Education and Training

Early School Leaving had been assigned a key issue in the ET2020 strategy. The ambitious target was set to lower the rate of young people without upper secondary education to 10 % by 2020. The commission agreed on a general definition: ESL was measured at the age cohort 18 an 24 accounting for “NEETs”, young adults Not in Employment, Education or Training. Some discrepancies are caused as on national level different definitions had been established and are still in use in data collection.

By December 2011 DG EAC1 established a High Level Thematic Working Group (TWG) on ESL. This consists of representatives of national ministries of education and experts related to those. In addition several European stakeholder associations were invited to participate. Among them are EPA, OBESSU2 representing the school students in upper secondary education and ETUCE3 representing teachers.

During the first discussions the ESL-group identified the field of VET as specific focus. This sector shows extraordinary rates of school dropout and offers a lot of “second chance” pathways at the same time which bring students beck into the education system. So it was decided to establish a special group to tackle this field. EPA was accepted to participate in this newly established TWG on ESL in VET.

On March 1st, 2013 the first meeting took place in Brussels in the Madou-building. You can read the full report on the following link:


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