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Focus on democracy and tolerance in secondary education in all EU countries (completed)

  • Start: 2017
  • Status: completed

The European Parliament initiated a study into how secondary schools in European countries focus on the values of democracy and tolerance. The study was performed by the University of Humanistic Studies, headed by Prof. Wiel Veugelers

Download the report from the European Parliament website


The study consists of a survey of policy in all EU countries and case studies in 11 European countries regarding the extent to which secondary schools focus attention in practice on values such as democracy and tolerance. The study was conducted in collaboration with universities in 11 other European countries and with experts in all 28 EU countries. 

The report Teaching Common Values was presented to the European Parliament on 29 June 2017. The study shows that there isn’t just a gap between policy and practice, but also between general goals and specific measures within policy. Many schools devote relatively little attention to democracy and tolerance. However, the study also shows that countries can have a coherent and well-elaborated policy and can give a more dialogue-based and democratic content to Teaching Common Values

The report calls for a further elaboration of Teaching Common Values democracy and tolerance and an exchange of practices and experiences within and between countries.



European Parliament


Veugelers, W., de Groot, I. & Stolk, V. (2017). Research for CULT Committee – Teaching Common Values in Europe, European Parliament, Policy Department for Structural and Cohesion Policies, Brussels.


Prof. Wiel Veugelers,

The research consists of a study of policy in all EU countries and case studies in 11 European countries on the practice of paying attention to values such as democracy and tolerance.