Cultivating Franco-German friendship in our schools

Today, the Federal Minister of Education and Research Anja Karliczek will have a virtual meeting with school classes from Germany and France to celebrate the Franco-German Day. This day is mainly dedicated to Franco-German relations in the educational institutions of the two countries. On the Franco-German Day, institutions, authorities and companies offer young people an insight into their everyday work and into their experiences with the partner country. 


Illustration Deutsch-Französische Freundschaft

© fotomek / Fotolia

On this occasion, the Federal Minister of Education will meet with 10th grade students from Germany and France in a video conference and discuss the future of Franco-German friendship with them.

Federal Minister Anja Karliczek explains:

'I am looking forward to celebrating the Franco-German Day with a Franco-German Discovery Day and to meeting students from Germany and France virtually. We want to exchange ideas about how our two countries can grow even closer together from the perspective of young people. I think it is very important that pupils inform themselves about the respective partner country. This will also lay the foundation for a good relationship between our two countries in the future. There are many ways to do this, for example through a school exchange, an internship or studying in a neighboring country. That is why we want to give young people an insight into the excellent cooperation between Germany and France, which we in the Federal Ministry of Education Research have been successfully practicing for many decades. With our programmes, for example, we support learning stays in vocational training and the networking of schools. France is one of our most important partner countries.

Our ties to France have a long tradition. I was particularly pleased with the results of a recent survey commissioned by the German Embassy in Paris: Germany enjoys an extremely positive image in France. However, the results also showed that many people in France still lack knowledge about Germany. That is why it is encounters like the one on Franco-German Day that offer an ideal opportunity to bring schoolchildren from Germany and France even closer together - even if this is unfortunately only possible virtually during a pandemic. '

The Franco-German Day was created in 2003 as part of the 40th anniversary of the Elysée Treaty. The event, which takes place every year on 22 January, is intended to commemorate the Franco-German friendship and, above all, to address bilateral relations in educational institutions in both countries and to introduce young people to the neighboring country.

The BMBF has been promoting mobility, learning stays in vocational training and networking between schools for many years. The Franco-German Agency for Exchange in Vocational Education and Training,  ProTandem, has been promoting professional exchanges between young people and adults since 1980. Within the Erasmus + programme, the eTwinning programme connects schools and preschool institutions in Europe for joint learning activities.

The DLR Project Management Agency supports the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in the preparation and implementation of the Franco-German Discovery Day.