The European Pillar of Social Rights states that ‘everyone (in Europe) has the right to quality and inclusive education, training and lifelong learning in order to maintain and acquire skills that enable them to participate fully in society and manage successfully transitions in the labour market’. However, more than 60 million Europeans aged 25 to 64 only have a lower secondary qualification or lower; a similar number struggle with basic tasks such as reading, writing, calculating or using a computer.

To help its Member States to take both preventive and remedial action, the EU has launched a number of measures, including two large-scale initiatives:
The Youth guarantee helps EU countries ensure that all ‘young people up to the age of 25 receive a good quality offer of employment, continued education, an apprenticeship or a traineeship within four months of leaving school or becoming unemployed’. All countries have committed to implementing the Youth guarantee as laid out in a 2013 Council recommendation.

Download the full briefing note here, available in all relevant languages.