The challenge facing the EU, is to strengthen the reform of school systems so that every young person can develop his or her full potential, through improved access and opportunities, to become an active participant in the emerging knowledge economy, and to reinforce social solidarity.

Member States are responsible for the organisation and content of education and training. Europes diverse school systems. Most Member States now have lifelong learning strategies in which school education is central.

The Commission believes that, given the common nature of many of the challenges facing school systems and the importance of these issues for the Unions socio-economic future, school education should be a key priority for the next cycle of the Lisbon process.

This Communication draws on the responses to the Commissions 2007 public consultation, recent work by peer learning clusters of Member State experts, and the latest international statistics and research, to propose an agenda for strengthening European cooperation on schools by identifying the major challenges facing systems that can best be tackled by such cooperation.

These are divided into three areas:

  • Focus on competences
  • High quality learning for every student 
  • Teachers and school staff