COVID-19: MEPs call for measures to close the digital gap in education

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.


MEPs called for the digital gap in Europe to be closed, as the pandemic exacerbated inequalities in the EU, making it difficult for many to access school education.

 The resolution was adopted on Thursday by 593 votes in favour, 58 against and 36 abstentions.

Digital education must be reality for all

MEPs deplore the “severe discrepancies” in learning across the EU during the lockdown, with 32% of pupils in some member states not having had any access to education for several months. They fear that this will decrease future income levels for a whole generation and negatively impact labour productivity and competitiveness for the European Union as a whole.

Therefore, closing the digital divide must be an immediate concern, with the Commission prioritising investments in connectivity and equipment, particularly in remote and rural areas, as well as instructing and assisting teachers and trainers in how to use the new technology.

Beef up investment to prepare for the second wave

“Many countries are still unprepared in the face of the second wave that is now hitting Europe. More should be done to guarantee access to quality education and training for all, and for that we need to invest in education. We deeply regret that the Council is proposing cuts to programmes that support education and training. We reiterate the call for the Erasmus+ budget to be tripled. We encourage Member States to significantly increase public spending on education. The Commission must prioritise investments in education in the Recovery plan”, said Victor Negrescu (S&D,RO), speaking on behalf of the EP’s Committee on Culture and Education in the plenary debate ahead of the vote.

A bold vision for European Education Area

MEPs also criticise the lack of coordination and the exchange of best education practices during the crisis, and say that the EU should be more active in coordinating between states. They proposed that a platform should be provided for member states to share practices and called for the European Education Area to progress “from a loose vision based on broad principles into a concrete work programme”.

“We welcome the education package put forward by the Commission at the end of September; however, it is only the first step. It is now time for the vision for a European Education Area and a revamped Digital Education Action Plan to be backed up by concrete measures and with the funding to deliver them”, said the rapporteur Sabine Verheyen (EPP,DE) after the vote.

Note to editors

According to UNESCO, even in the world’s most developed countries, during the first COVID-19 crisis, access to digital education was around 90 %, with 10 % of school pupils still being left behind. Fewer than 25 % of low-income countries have provided some form of remote learning.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

90% of plastic polluting our oceans comes from just 10 rivers

The EU prepares for the end of LIBOR: the Commission welcomes the agreement reached between the European Parliament and the Council on financial benchmarks

US resolution to condemn activities of Hamas voted down in General Assembly

Women Win in the West

YouTubers are teaming up to plant 20 million trees

Car emissions: MEPs set end on gap between lab and real driving emission tests

Will satellites destroy our view of space?

Commission presents ways to further strengthen the euro’s global role

SCADA Security Conference 2017 in Prague, Czech Republic

Data protection: MEPs urge the Commission to amend UK adequacy decisions

Eurozone: The crisis hit countries are again subsidizing the German and French banks

EU-wide survey shows Europeans support the launch of the Conference on the Future of Europe

GSMA Announces New Speakers for Mobile 360 Series – Middle East and North Africa

Reckless Prescriptions: Lunatic Ideas Put By Great People Are Genius

On World Bee day, human activity blamed for falling pollinator numbers

Space science now a ‘fundamental pillar’ of 21st century human development: top UN space official

Abuse of authority provisions adopted by the Senate raise concerns over Brazil’s capacity to ensure independence of prosecutors and judges in fighting corruption

Inclusion, empowerment and equality, must be ‘at the heart of our efforts’ to ensure sustainable development, says UN chief

This is how companies are working together to create a world without waste

Nairobi summit: Women’s empowerment a ‘game changer’ for sustainable development

Innovation and Entrepreneurship Changing the Face of Europe

Disease slashing global meat output, cereals boom, bananas under watch: FAO

Migrant workers sent more money to India than any other country last year

3 strategies for Africa to thrive in this new era of globalization

COP25: MEPs push for CO2 neutrality by 2050

A Trumpist squad shook Davos and the world

How and why Mercedes fakes the EU fuel consumption tests

Health challenges need predictable healthcare investment policies. Japan’s example shows why

EU economy: Between recession and indiscernible growth

Global Citizen-Volunteer Internships

European Union disenchanted with Turkey

Emergency coronavirus research: Commission selects 18th project to develop rapid diagnostics

Donor countries need to reform development finance to meet 2030 pledge

Protecting people working through platforms: Commission launches a first-stage consultation of the social partners

What Keynes can teach us about government debt today

Christine Lagarde: This is what we can still learn from the Great War

Coronavirus: additional ventilators dispatched to Czechia via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism

EU27 leaders unite on Brexit Guidelines ahead of “tough negotiations” with Theresa May

Antitrust: Commission launches sector inquiry into the consumer Internet of Things (IoT)

Tackling ‘deeply worrying’ global rise in anti-Semitism is a job for all societies everywhere, says UN chief

New citizenship law in India ‘fundamentally discriminatory’: UN human rights office

Why the Fourth Industrial Revolution needs more arts graduates

Could entrepreneurship be the real cure against the side effects of Brexit?

Measles ‘misinformation campaigns’ through social media, fuel rising toll

What is carbon offsetting?

Commission puts in place transparency and authorisation mechanism for exports of COVID-19 vaccines

FROM THE FIELD: Chad returnees’ reluctant homecoming

Beyond ‘business as usual’. Addressing the climate change crisis

EU Summit’s major takeaway: a handkerchief cannot save Greece from austerity

4 essential qualities for digital leaders

Parliament names radio studio after journalists murdered in December attack

Brexit: With May gone the Tory divide is to sink the UK despite Brits wanting to ‘Remain’

Serious concerns over Sahel, require ‘urgent action’: Senior UN Africa official

Localized microfactories – the new face of globalized manufacturing

Migrants, asylum seekers detained in Hungary ‘deliberately deprived of food’: UN human rights office

This is our chance to completely redefine the meaning of work

6 reasons why Africa’s new free trade area is a global game changer

‘Embrace the transformation’ to a carbon-neutral world by 2050, UN chief tells COP25

One person dies by suicide every 40 seconds: new UN health agency report

What happiness can teach us about how we measure human development

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s