Minister Divjak summoned a virtual meeting of EU education ministers

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On Tuesday, 14 April, the Croatian Presidency of the Council of the EU is organizing a videoconference of ministers of education on the implications of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on education and training.

The videoconference is to be chaired by Blaženka Divjak, Minister of Science and Education, form the National and University Library in Zagreb. Considering the approaching end of the school year, one of the key questions ministers are going to discuss at the videoconference is how to ensure the continuity of assessment and grading in the given situation, with the organization of school exit exams, such as the state matura, as one of the essential issues. This issue is also linked to the question of the duration of the school and academic year, as well the enrolment to different levels of education.

„Currently, all EU Member States are in the same, unpredictable situation. Therefore, it is important to talk and exchange experiences at the EU level. We are facing similar questions – how to organize the functioning of education and training systems in the given circumstances and ensure the continuity of teaching and learning for our pupils and students. One of the key questions is the organization of school exit exams. As I have pointed out several times, as far as Croatia is concerned, we are paying special attention to solving the issues related to the state matura and have prepared different scenarios, the implementation of which depends on the instructions of the Civil Protection Headquarters and the spreading of the coronavirus in Croatia“, Minister Divjak pointed out.

This will be the second coronavirus-related informal videoconference of ministers of education. The first videoconference, chaired by Minister Divjak from Brussels on 12 March, was held at an early stage of the crisis caused by the spreading of the coronavirus. At the videoconference, ministers exchanged early experiences and information about measures taken and planned in order to ensure the continuation of the learning process, taking into account, above all, the safety of pupils. In the meantime, in response to the pandemic, EU Member States have taken further measures, including suspending regular classes in all or some education and training institutions and switching to distance education, with wide implementation of virtual learning possibilities. Taking this into account, the second videoconference will provide ministers with an opportunity to continue their discussion, focusing on the challenges arising due to the switch to distance education.

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