Alliance calls for school reforms at education summit
In Berlin has a federal education minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger (FDP) opened the education summit, to which, however, only two ministers of education came. All ministers of education in countries governed by the Union stayed away from the summit because they do not expect any significant progress in the education system. Only the President of the Conference of Ministers of Education and Berlin Education Senator Astrid Sabine Busse (SPD) and the coordinator of the social-democratic states and Hamburg School Senator Ties Rabe (SPD) are present.
The Federal Education Minister herself had already dampened expectations at the weekend. She said: “It’s a work process that we want to start. Because we will not solve the major challenges in two days.”
Criticism from educational organizations
In itself, the Berlin conference is a regular specialist conference on educational research, which deals with the question of how educational findings can be put into practice. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) preceded this conference with two discussion rounds and a keynote speech and then announced the whole thing as an education summit.
Meanwhile, 50 organizations, including the most important educational foundations, associations and unions, in a joint appeal to the Federal Chancellor and the Prime Ministers of the federal states to finally declare education a top priority. Together with the education, science and youth ministers of the federal and state governments, representatives from federal, state and local politics as well as parents and students, they have to initiate a continuous reform process with joint work structures.
Own call from the unions
A real national education summit is a strong signal for this. “Because the restart in education as an elementary prerequisite for Germany’s future viability can only succeed if we join forces,” the paper says.
The unsystematic interweaving of the political levels requires complex coordination between the federal, state and local authorities and the departments involved and with the sponsors. The tough implementation of the digital pact and the sluggish expansion of the all-day offer for primary school children in many areas show where this is going. The urgency of the problems does not allow waiting for a reorganization of municipal and federal responsibilities.
The foundations criticize that the education system is less and less successful in correcting undesirable developments. That’s because of the massive teacher shortage and a lack of pedagogical specialists – problems that are likely to worsen in the coming years.
The German trade union federation (DGB) and the Confederation of Employers’ Associations (BDA) called for better educational quality and a joint strategy from the federal, state and local governments in their own appeal. The aim must be to reduce the number of students who do not even meet the minimum standards. You have also called for taking vocational training more seriously.