Since 2018, the Agency has been a technical provider for several actions under the Technical Support Instrument (TSI), previously known as the Structural Reform Support Programme (SRSP). The Directorate-General for Structural Reform Support (DG REFORM) coordinates and provides tailor-made technical support to EU Member States via TSI actions, in cooperation with the relevant Commission services. The goal is to support Member States’ efforts to design and implement resilience-enhancing reforms, thereby contributing to the EU’s recovery from the COVID-19 crisis, improving the quality of public services and getting back on the path of sustainable and inclusive growth. (See more about Structural Reform Support on the European Commission’s website.)
As a technical provider, the Agency helps the ministries of education in the participating countries to plan, design or implement reforms that make their education policy and provision more equitable and inclusive. This work is based on the countries’ requirements, so each activity is tailor-made for the individual country. Accordingly, for each activity, the Agency sets up a dedicated team with relevant expertise and experience.
This web area presents the following outputs from the Agency’s TSI/SRSP activities:
- Country outputs: these are the main action reports developed for countries which contain key findings and recommendations;
- Country examples and materials used during peer-learning activities.
To date, the following Agency member countries have initiated TSI/SRSP activities:
- Cyprus (2018–2019 and 2019–2021)
- Czech Republic (2019–2021)
- France (2022–2024)
- Greece (2019–2021 and 2022–2024)
- Multi-country: Portugal, Italy and Spain (2022–2024)
- Poland (2018–2019 and 2019–2021)
- Portugal (2020–2022).
Each TSI/SRSP activity is tailored to the individual country. However, in all cases, the principles of inclusive education underpin the work. This is in line with the Agency’s ultimate vision for inclusive education systems, which is to ensure that all learners of any age are provided with meaningful, high-quality educational opportunities in their local community, alongside their friends and peers. It is also in keeping with EU and international stated priorities on education.
In several of the activities, the Agency has used its Analysis Framework for Mapping Inclusive Education Policies. This was developed to systematically record available documentary evidence on country policies for inclusive education in a highly structured way.
Aims and benefits
Through the TSI, DG REFORM aims to help EU member states to recover from the social and economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, to improve the quality of public services and to reinforce sustainable and inclusive economic growth.
The TSI covers various policy areas, one of which is ‘Skills, education and training’. The Agency’s TSI actions fall under this policy area. Each action has country-specific aims and objectives.
Through these activities, countries benefit from the Agency’s analysis of legislation and policy. Other Agency member countries also participate, as they are involved in peer-learning activities and have opportunities to contribute to and learn from the sharing of policy development experiences.
In addition to the countries where the actions have taken place, the following member countries have been involved in peer-learning activities associated with these TSI/SRSP actions: Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Sweden, United Kingdom (Scotland).
The TSI work benefits the Agency and all its member countries, as the lessons learnt and experience gained interlink and create synergies with other Agency activities. Similarly, the Agency’s knowledge in other areas feeds into its TSI activities.
Main activities and outputs
The following sections briefly describe each of the Agency’s TSI/SRSP activities.
Special Education Reform in Cyprus (2018–2019)
The Agency supported the Cypriot national authorities’ initiatives to reform the special education system according to their priorities, by providing policy recommendations and a draft of a revised bill on special needs and inclusive education.
Completion of the Special Education Reform in Cyprus (2019–2021)
The Agency assisted the Cypriot Ministry of Education in preparing regulations to support the implementation of a new law. The law was drafted with the Agency’s support during the previous activity.
Read more about this action in previous Agency news items.
Addressing Regional Disparities in the Czech Education System (2019–2021): Supporting the implementation of measures to promote more inclusive and equitable learning opportunities for all learners in Karlovarský and Ústecký regions
The Agency supported the implementation of measures to promote more inclusive and equitable learning opportunities for all learners in two regions of the Czech Republic. These regions had high disparities in education compared to the rest of the country.
Enhance the French App for inclusive education (Livret de Parcours Inclusif) (2022–2024)
The Agency aims to support the French Ministry of Education to deploy the LPI (Livret de Parcours Inclusif) digital educational tool throughout the national territory, to ensure its acceptance among stakeholders, to develop its use without stigmatising learners, to assess and monitor how it operates and to identify ways to improve its functioning.
Promoting Inclusive Education in Greece: Addressing Challenges in Legislation, Educational Policy and Practice (2019–2021)
The main objective was to help develop and implement a new law introduced in 2018. The activity centred on the role of support structures and their co-operation with mainstream schools.
See this action also on the European Commission’s website.
Implementation of the European Child Guarantee – Promoting Inclusive Education in Greece (INCLEDU) Phase II (2022–2024)
This activity aims to improve inclusive education in Greece by supporting the Greek authorities to pilot a newly adopted inclusive education policy framework at school level before its roll-out. It builds on the previous phase’s results and recommendations.
Combatting Disparities in Access to Inclusive Education in Portugal, Italy and Spain (EUROCH) (2022–2024)
This activity aims to improve design and consistency in policy implementation at national and regional level, and the quality of inclusive education policies across Italy, Portugal and Spain. These three countries are seeking support in putting policy reforms in place that improve equity in education for all learners, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds. The aim is to help their efforts to effectively implement the European Child Guarantee.
Supporting the Improvement of Quality in Inclusive Education (2018–2019)
The Agency worked with the Ministry of Education and its stakeholders to develop the conceptual framework for a new legislative framework for inclusive education.
Supporting the Improvement of Quality in Inclusive Education – Phase II (2019–2021)
The Agency supported the development of new legislation to improve the quality of education for all learners.
Design a System to Monitor the Implementation of the Law on Inclusive Education in Portugal (2020–2022)
The Agency helped to design a system for monitoring the implementation of Portugal’s Law on Inclusive Education. The monitoring system includes standards and an accompanying set of indicators, as well as guiding questions to promote reflection and exploration.
See this action also on the European Commission’s website.