VILNIUS – Representatives of Lithuania’s parliamentary parties on Wednesday signed an education policy pact at the Seimas.
The document outlines eighteen specific commitments in the area of education, eight success targets as well as three financial targets. The agreement will run until 2030.
According to Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte, who attended the signing ceremony, the provisions of the agreement would start to be implemented as early as when drafting the budget of 2022.
The document stresses that its provisions will be implemented with respective public authorities adopting the required legislative acts and other decisions “irrespective of electoral cycles, campaigns, results and changes in political authority”. It also says that this process will involve social partners.
As regards financial indicators, the agreement stipulates that the amount of general government and municipal budget expenditure per student in general and vocational secondary education will increase to at least 24 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita by the end of 2030, from 17.8 percent in 2017, which will be achieved by increasing state funding starting from 2022.
Expenditure per student in higher education should reach 36 percent of GDP per capita in 2030, from 25 percent in 2017, whereas appropriations for R&D in higher education and the general government sector should amount to at least 1 percent of GDP by that time, up from 0.3 percent in 2018. In 2024, the latter indicator should be as high as at least 0.75 percent of GDP.
In addition, the agreement stipulates that the average wage of schoolteachers shall amount to 130 percent of the national average wage and that of lecturers, scientists and other researchers – to at least 150 percent until the end of 2024.
The agreement also calls, among other things, for creating conditions for pre-school education of all children, ensuring safe educational environment free from any form of bullying or violence, and providing possibilities for teachers and other staff members to improve social, emotional and other competences.