Digital skills and education package


In April, the European Commission adopted a comprehensive digital skills and education package. The aim of this package is to support Member States, and their education and training sectors, in providing high-quality, inclusive and accessible digital education and training to develop the digital skills of European citizens.

The main challenges addressed by the package are:

  • the lack of a whole-of-government approach to digital education and training; and
  •  difficulties in equipping people with the necessary digital skills.

When it comes to digital competences, the situation in Europe is far from ideal.  Currently, only around one third of students attend schools that have developed strategies on how to use digital technologies in teaching and learning. Only 39% of teachers feel well prepared to use digital technologies for teaching. Investing in digital infrastructures will be essential, as less than 20% of EU students are studying in schools with an internet speed above 100 mbps. It is important to have national strategies, and to ensure that digital skills will be inclusive for everyone, regardless of their social background or geographical location.

There is also a huge gap between adults' and young people's digital skills. The use of digital technologies now starts at a very early age, which makes it essential to help adults to cope with this new aspect of parenting. Coordinated initiatives that will benefit all segments of the population need to be set up.

Digital transitions are already changing jobs. The European Pillar of Social Rights Action Plan sets ambitious targets to support Member States in their digital transformation, aimed at ensuring that 80% of adults have at least basic digital skills, and that 20 million ICT specialists are employed in the EU, with more participation from women.

Key points:

In the opinion, the EESC:

  • backs the commitment made by the Commission and the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the EU to ensure digital inclusion for all, highlighting the importance of lifelong learning and access to quality education throughout one's career and life;
  • recommends that the Commission  supports Member States in launching large-scale information campaigns on digital learning opportunities for all, and provides funding and resources to support the digitalisation of VET and adult learning. It stresses the need for AI knowledge to bridge digital gaps and strengthen EU competitiveness;
  • recommends that the Commission encourages Member States to focus on equal access to digital education and tools, thereby also ensuring accessibility for learners and teachers with disabilities, addressing urban-rural gaps and bias in algorithms. It also calls for improved access to EU and national funding of civil society, trade unions and employers' efforts to improve digital skills, eliminate digital exclusion and close the digital gap in society.

The text of the draft opinion can be found here.

Additional information

Section: Employment, Social Affairs and Citizenship (SOC)

Opinion number: SOC/774

Opinion type: Optional

Rapporteur: Milena ANGELOVA, Tatjana BABRAUSKIENÈ, Justyna Kalina OCHĘDZAN

Reference: European Commission, 29/06/2023

Letter from the Belgian Presidency of the Council, 10/07/2023

Date of adoption by section: 04/10/2023

Result of the vote: 68 in favour/0 against/1 abstention

Date of adoption in plenary: 25/10/2023

Result of the vote: 241 in favour/2 against/4 abstentions



Press officer:  Laura Lui           

Tel.:     00 32 2 546 9189



Press officer assistant: Alexandra Brihaye



Administrator: Sabrina Borg