Advisory report on the meaning of ‘Europe’ for Dutch education

Internationalisation in education as it takes place in a European context influences and impacts Dutch education. With the introduction of the European Education Area by the European Commission a few years ago, collaboration between EU Member States in the field of education has been strengthened. Some of this collaboration is governed by EU regulations which apply directly in the Netherlands, and which take precedence over Dutch law. In addition, there are ‘softer’ forms of collaboration and coordination, such as the ‘open method of coordination’ (OMC).

Beeld: ©Onderwijsraad

The European educational context is also characterised by a common language, a shared set of definitions (‘Eurodiscourse’), a ‘knowledge base’ (research, data collection, statistics) and a system of knowledge-building and dissemination. Familiar examples of this include the large-scale international comparative studies of students (PISA) and teachers (TALIS), carried out under the leadership of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

These international comparisons produce valuable insights for (Dutch) education,. Other positive aspects of ‘Europe’ include opportunities for exchanges between countries and sharing of good practices. At the same time, there are risks concerning EU education policy and governance based on the content of that policy, for example lack of democratic legitimacy, declining sovereignty and administrative distance.

Report in preparation

The Education Council of the Netherlands is currently working on an advisory report focusing on the question: ‘What are the opportunities and risks of ‘Europe’ for the Dutch education system and education policy?’.

The report is scheduled for publication in the second quarter of 2023.