Our continent is changing shape. Twenty-five years of European Union. Ten years of economic crisis. Neoliberal politics are operating in all spheres of society. The role of public education and university is also changing.
From the Bologna Process onwards the reforms and policy changes in education are following the EU suggestions. A visible effect of this are the so called “3+2” system implementation; the cuts in the number of degrees; the increase of fees and so on and so forth. It is evident also in the new student evaluation systems that looks like business parameters, and in the increasing polarisation between universities of first and second class, both within and between countries in the European context.
This division between “good” and “bad” colleges cause an international competition between universities and increases the inequality between Northern and Southern Europe; This gap has been widened by the economic crisis and by the austerity policies dictated by the EU.
The so called “brain drain” (but it’s better to start calling it “brain robbery”) is part and consequence of this phenomenon: an exodus of hundred thousand of young people and students forced to emigrate from peripheral countries, looking for better life conditions, because of the dismantlement of public education and productive system, especially in the Mediterranean countries.
Life-long learning, mobility and entrepreneurial spirit, meritocracy are the ideological slogans used to justify competition and flexibility of the workforce in the way needed by the market. Those, then, constitute the foundation and the function of the education system in the EU.
The consequence is therefore an increasingly classist and elitist education system, focused on professional skills essential for the markets, which deprives the people from obtaining the emancipatory instruments given by education and knowledge.
As Forum to Fight, a European platform of students and youth organizations, we believe that is fundamental to launch a campaign to denounce this situation, and we will start in our territories during the Autumn of 2017!
Education for the people!
Against the classist and entrepreneurial university!
For a free and public university!
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