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  • Support for Erasmus grows in UK

    - The British House of Lords urged the government to revoke its opposition to the 70% Erasmus exchange budget increase proposed by the EU Commission. Instead, PM David Cameron should come up with plans to convince Brits to study abroad.

    In the report "Modernisation of Higher Education in Europe" the British House of Lords stated that "many of our witnesses supported the Commission's proposed funding increase for Erasmus for All. While the British Council speculated that the increase could hypothetically result in a doubling of student mobility funding for the United Kingdom, the Minister stood alone in opposing the proposed 70 per cent funding increase for Erasmus for All as being  'completely unrealistic'."

    "We note the government's opposition to the Commission's preferred funding increase for Erasmus for All but reiterate our view that this programme merits a proportionately larger allocation under the next multi-annual financial framework."

    Tackle low outward mobility

    Instead of curtailing the Erasmus program, the House of Lord demands that the Education Minister David Willets does something about the low mobility of British students. This would entail for instance that foreign languages become mandatory subjects in primary and secondary schools.

    In the report, the House of Lords points out that "outward mobility from comparator countries including France, Germany and Spain is still approximately three times that of the United Kingdom and, as a result, the United Kingdom is a substantial net receiver of Erasmus students from elsewhere in the EU."

    "The government must place higher education at the heart of their growth agenda in order to maintain and contribute to the economic and social wealth of the UK and Europe as a whole. In the immediate few months, this will require the government to negotiate ambitiously to allocate a greater proportion of the long-term EU budget to research, innovation and education, including the Erasmus programme."