Making Lifelong Learning and Mobility a Reality for All

Societal, technological, digital, environmental and economic challenges are increasingly affecting everyday life, including the distribution of jobs and the demand for skills and competences. The high number of career transitions the average European citizen is expected to go through, coupled with the increase of the retirement age, make lifelong learning and lifelong career guidance, essential for a just transition, as education and skills levels continue to be a fundamental factor in the labour market.

In this context, on June 17, Servizzi Ewropej f’Malta and the Ministry for Education held the second of a series of five online discussions with interested stakeholders on the new Strategic Framework for Education and Training 2030 (ET2030), established by Council Resolution on a strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training towards the European Education Area and beyond (2021-2030) of February 2021. The series of sessions is intended to provide information on priorities in education and training at European Union level, consult about the implications for Malta and identify key priority areas for future involvement. The outcome of the sessions will feed into the national strategy and actions in the field of education and training.

This session focused on strategic priority 2 of ET2030 – Making Lifelong Learning and Mobility a Reality for All, with a panel of experts in the education and training fields: Sandra Ebejer – Director, Directorate for Learning and Assessment Programmes, Ministry for Education; Prof. Godfrey Baldacchino – Pro-Rector International Development & Quality Assurance Rectorate, University of Malta; Aleks Farrugia – Director, Directorate for Research, Lifelong Learning and Employability, Ministry for Education.

The online session focused on adult learning, reskilling and upskilling, the quality of guidance systems, and to make lifelong learning for employees more easily accessible.

Issues that were raised by participants during the discussion:

  • Offering better quality lifelong learning for all learners, including through ensuring flexibility between different learning pathways in various forms and levels of education and training, as well as validation of non-formal and informal learning.
  • To have a learner-centric high-quality education would also mean less focus on textbooks and confinements in classrooms and more outdoor learning in the early/primary years. Need to focus more on emotional intelligence and integrate STEM education in primary classes.
  • Wider upskilling and reskilling training opportunities, including at higher qualification levels and throughout the working life. This would only be possible for employees through employer-employee agreements, giving also the possibility for training during working hours.
  • Time has come to focus more on project-based learning rather than us teachers teaching isolated subjects.
  • Online learning and flexible working hours allow for further opportunities to upskill and develop potential, giving special attention to issues which particularly affect women.
  • More incentives need to be introduced including the full sponsorship of Masters and Doctoral degrees. This will surely make training inclusive irrespective of the financial limitations and other loan-commitments of the participants.
  • Flexibility (both in the delivery of sessions as well as in the mode of assessment) is a must in today’s context.  Covid19 accelerated the speed of these, much required changes in the way teaching and learning is conducted.

For more information on the online sessions and ET2030 targets please click here.

Submissions of written feedback on the topic and registration for the upcoming online sessions may be done by email to info.sem@gov.mt.

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