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Education, youth, culture and sport


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The Education, Youth and Culture (EYC) Council brings together education, culture, youth and communication Ministers around three or four times a year. It usually adopts its decisions by a qualified majority (apart from on cultural affairs, where it acts unanimously) and in codecision with the European Parliament.

The European Community's aim is to contribute to the development of quality education, the implementation of a vocational training policy and the flowering of Member States' cultures, bringing the common cultural heritage to the fore, while fully respecting the responsibility of the Member States for defining the content of teaching and vocational training and organising education and vocational training systems, as well as their national and regional cultural diversity.

In order to achieve those objectives, the Community's primary role is to provide a framework for cooperation between the Member States, which works by exchanges of information and experience on matters of shared interest. The Community can also use legislative channels where permitted by the Treaty establishing the European Community (for instance, on audiovisual matters and the mutual recognition of diplomas).

The Community complements Member States' action, especially by means of support programmes, with a view to:

arrow-green   contributing to the development of the teaching and dissemination of languages in order to develop the European dimension in education and training;

arrow-green   improving the knowledge and dissemination of the culture and history of the European peoples and safeguarding cultural heritage of European significance;

arrow-green   encouraging mobility of students and teachers by encouraging the mutual recognition of diplomas and periods of study;

arrow-green   promoting cooperation between educational and training establishments and, in particular with regard to training, with business;

arrow-green   improving initial and continuing vocational training with a view to facilitating the integration of citizens into the labour market, their adaptation to industrial change and their possible vocational retraining;

arrow-green   stimulating artistic and literary creation, including in the audiovisual sector.