AER Towards a new pedagogical pattern based on creativity & participation
Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown (IRL), 14 September 2004
European Regional Ministers of Education and Culture are concerned about the increasing economic use of education.
The Assembly of European Regions (AER), the representative organisation of the European Regions, is organising its third Conference of Ministers for Education and Culture in Dún Loaghaire-Rathdown / Ireland on 23 and 24 September.
The Conference will stress the importance of all art forms in our educational process, and make concrete proposals on how to achieve a new balance between economic considerations and human fulfilment. Discussions at the Conference will address the following issues: the aspects of creativity in teaching, the opening of schools to the community, the promotion of intercultural and intergenerational exchanges, the role of regional cultural institutions. The Conference is conceived as an “Open house” where acknowledged experts and practitioners who, on a daily basis, make the arts accessible for all the different groups in society discuss with regional Ministers.
Building on the AER Budapest Declaration (2003), the Conference will focus on a new educational paradigm that re-affirms the role of arts in education beyond pure utilitarian considerations. Regions are very much concerned that present educational concepts and mainstream political thinking seem to predominantly follow a very functional approach to arts education, highlighting criteria such as economic utilisation, professional qualifications and employability.
The third Conference of European regional Ministers is also part of the AER’s general initiative to establish an “International Legal Instrument for the Protection of Cultural Diversity”, now actively pursued in the UNESCO. It also embodies our firm opposition to further liberalization of educational and cultural services under the General Agreement of Trade and Services (GATS) and the promotion of liberalisation through a primarily market-orientated Constitutional Treaty. The Conference in Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown has the ambition of being able to turn the tide in favour of a re-appraisal of arts and culture in educational policies.
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