Dear colleagues, The European Commission published its plans for the future of ERASMUS PLUS earlir today. Here’s my first analysis (we’ll make sure to get more information in the next few days): Here’s the ugly: adult education will only get 3.9% of the budget, the same as last time. In numbers, this is 1.19 bio Euro for seven years. This is very strange as we had heard that the plan was for 6%, so we must have lost a THIRD of the planned budget. We will not accept this but raise hell and high water (actions and campaigns to follow). (I suspect that this money might have been moved to that ‘brilliant’ idea of the interrail passes, which is now called DiscoverEU, but don’t quote me on that!). If the budget does get doubled, then we would of course still get 2x the money of the current period, but it’s still unbelievable. Have a look at the factsheet’s pie chart of the budget on page 3 (https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/budget-may2018-erasmusplus_en.pdf) so you can understand and share my outrage. The bad: In one paragraph, it is said that the adult education part of the programme will be targeted at the low-skilled in order to make it more effective. This was what I had been afraid of after reading the midterm evaluation, and we’ll have to see what this means exactly. But it definitely does not sound like a comprehensive or holistic approach. The good: This time, there’s a strong emphasis on international cooperation, and the Neighbourhood countries should be able to participate in the partnerships (still need to check the mobilities). Great news for all our members!

There’s a new category of partnerships in KA2, and that is small scale partnerships. They’re meant for small, grassroots organisations with simple and light admin burdens. (They sound a bit like to old Learning Partnerships). This should be good news for adult education. In the ‘normal’ partnerships, which are now called ‘partnerships for cooperation’, mobility for groups of adult learners will be possible. Now we’ll try to find out what happened to the budget and we’ll come back to you for support in the next few days. Gina Ebner, Secretary General, European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA).