Making Erasmus+ more inclusive

30 August 2019

The new Erasmus+ programme will run from 2021 to 2027. EDF urges the decision makers to make the Eramus+ programme inclusive in practice and not only in theory. In order to achieve the goal of making the new Erasmus + an inclusive and accessible programme for all young people and other beneficiaries, including people with fewer opportunities, we suggest improvements in four main areas: inclusion, accessibility, funding and the role of national agencies.

  • Inclusion: It is essential that the definitions used are in line with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), signed and ratified by the EU and all Member States

  • Accessibility: Erasmus+ Programme must actively remove barriers to participation through considering reasonable accommodation and making sure the online tools comply with the existing EU Web Accessibility Directive. Accessibility of online tools is crucial with the increasing use of virtual mobility within the programme.

  • Funding: Adequate funding is essential for the correct implementation of measures to increase accessibility and advance inclusion. The regulation needs to recognise this and make sure that the cost of inclusion by itself cannot be a reason to deny someone the opportunity to participate in the new Erasmus+ Programme.

  • National agencies: New regulation must encourage national agencies to support and select projects where the main actors are people with fewer opportunities. This means national agencies should receive training to increase their knowledge on inclusivity, which can be provided by NGOs representing and working with specific groups in the field. National agencies should also be adequately funded to avoid projects being refused due to increased costs related to inclusion.

EDF joined the Inclusive Mobility alliance and the Erasmus+ Coalition to join forces in advocating for inclusive mobility programmes. With the first group we produced recommendations for the decision makers on European and national level, for national agencies and beneficiaries.

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