Erasmus Plus Alliance (EPA)

Who are We?

A campaigning group of all ages from all parts of the UK. Our leaders come from Grassroots for Europe (G4E), the Centre for International Learning and Leadership (CILL), and the Young European Movement (YEM). The team includes students, academics, teachers, educationalists, training-providers and youth workers. We are volunteers, non-party-political,  and open to all who share our values and goals.

We want present and future generations in our country to have the opportunities provided by the Erasmus+ international exchange programme.

We plan to act as a resource of information about international mobility for young people.

 

What do we Want?

We want present and future generations in our country to have the opportunities provided by the Erasmus+ international exchange programme.

10 Reasons Why?

My life would have taken a different path had I not had that year abroad and so enjoyed living in Germany and connecting with people from all over the world. The Erasmus scheme and EU citizenship, with its inbuilt freedom of movement, made that an easily accessible and affordable experience and I am so grateful for the opportunities I was given. It seems such a shame that younger generations of Brits may miss out due to decisions they were not part of. 

Cathy Rogers, Erasmus 1997

1. Erasmus+ transforms lives,  builds international friendship, improves employment prospects and helps the economy. Britain is excluded from opportunities enjoyed by the rest of Europe, and beyond.

2. Because the Government’s replacement Turing scheme does not provide many of the opportunities offered, under the ‘Plus’ heading, to those who do not go to university.

3. Because above all Erasmus+ is giving unprecedented funding to  the least privileged. It is the best existing programme for ‘levelling-up’.

4. Because Erasmus+ prioritises teaching essential for the future. It promotes the knowledge and skills needed for the digital revolution and for creating a green economy. Turing has no comparable coherent plan.

5. Because there was no democratic mandate to quit Erasmus+. Education is a devolved competence. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland were dragged out of the scheme against the will of their elected parliaments.

6. Because Erasmus+ was not a part of Brexit. On January 15th, 2020, Boris Johnson told the Commons ‘there is no threat to the Erasmus scheme. We will continue to participate.’ Eleven months later, Erasmus+ was abandoned without debate.

7. Because British educational professionals played a key role in creating the Erasmus programme. Its architect was Hywel Ceri Jones, Head of the EU Commission’s Directorate for Education, Training and Youth in the 1980s.

8. Because taxpayers’ money has funded the development and running of Erasmus+ exchanges for 35 years; staff have devoted a working life-time to the scheme.

9. Because, therefore, Erasmus+ ‘is not theirs to give away’, in the words of Anna Grainger, a primary school language teacher who is a key member of our Alliance.

10. Because we had the option of retaining the programme. Six non-EU countries (including Norway, Iceland, Turkey) are full participants in Erasmus+, as well as the 27 EU member states. 168 partner countries from all continents take part in at least one Erasmus+ activity. It is a global programme to which we could have retained access. The Government chose not to. They cited cost. Pulling out has created a £420m. hole in the finances of local communities which hosted incoming students.

Our Partners & Sponsors

Festival of Europe
Grassroots for Europe