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Adult Education Act passed by Parliament: Historic Day for Lifelong Learning in Berlin

In its session on May 20, 2021, the Berlin House of Representatives passed the law on adult education in Berlin without dissenting votes in the second reading. This means that the law drawn up under the leadership of the Senate Department for Education, Youth and Family will come into force on August 1st, 2021.

Sandra Scheeres, Senator for Education, Youth and Family: “I am delighted that the House of Representatives passed the Adult Education Act so quickly and unanimously - this is a historic day for lifelong learning in Berlin. With this law, adult education is placed on a new basis and significantly strengthened. In this way, all Berliners have better access to high-quality adult education. "

The Adult Education Act fills a blank space in the legal regulations on the education system in Berlin. For the first time, the large area of ​​general adult education is comprehensively regulated. All adult Berliners are addressed with their diverse educational interests. In this way, lifelong learning in Berlin is sustainably strengthened and anchored in law.

The Adult Education Act has three objectives in particular:

First, the existing public adult education facilities in Berlin, the twelve local adult education centers in Berlin and the Berlin State Center for Civic Education will be structurally secured. For the adult education centers, this means that important stipulations are made on the offer, equipment, digital performance, quality standards and the participation of course instructors and participants. The Berlin State Center for Civic Education will exist for the first time on a legal basis and thus be sustainably secured. Funding for education and training advice is also enshrined in law.

Secondly, educational control and funding instruments are being developed in the field of adult education, which have not previously existed in this form in Berlin. In addition, institutions that offer adult education to Berliners can become “Recognized institutions for adult education in Berlin” and then participate in newly created funding opportunities for important and innovative projects and programs. The Senate Department for Education, Youth and Family will provide information on the recognition of institutions when it comes into force on August 1st.

Thirdly, the public visibility of adult education is significantly increased and the social discussion about adult education and its offers is promoted. An adult education advisory board will be set up for this purpose. In addition, a regular report on the status of adult education in Berlin is presented and a prize is awarded for special offers and formats in adult education.