Green light for lifelong learning

Unique partnership of the federal government, municipalities and foundations/Media Foundation supports Leipzig with basic sponsorship

"Our goal is to create one of the best educational systems in the world. This includes the offering of the right education in every stage of life to the present generation and the next generation", said the Federal Minister of Education Annette Schavan during the initial conference of the nationwide educational programme "Lernen vor Ort" ("local learning") on Tuesday. "In times of change only a learning society can be successful. So, education is a shared responsibility of all involved parties", said Schavan. "With 'Lernen vor Ort' a new public-private educational partnership consisting of the federal government, municipalities and foundations begins. This will help to develop a coordinated educational system on the local level: from early childhood education to adult education.”

During a first three-year process, 40 municipalities from all over Germany will begin to inform and advise their citizens about the numerous educational opportunities. The focus of "Lernen vor Ort" is on the creation of a municipal education management that brings together the different responsibilities for education on the local level. The aspects of demographic change integration and diversity management, family education and parental work, democracy and culture as well as business, technology, environment and science, which are important to the local educational system and which are taking into account the regional characteristics, will be included into the project.

40 municipalities, which have been chosen during a national competition, will receive funding from the federal government and the European Social Fund in the amount of approximately 60 million Euros. The municipalities will be supported by German foundations which are committed in education. Until now, 113 foundations from all federal states are supporting the municipalities as sponsors. As independent members of the civil society, the foundations bring in their knowledge and their experience to advice parents about the best education, to prepare people for honorary office and to develop concepts for a better provision for securing the need for qualified employees in the region.

The city of Leipzig also receives funds from the federal government. The money will be used to ensure that private and public education in the city will preferably work together. The education of the citizens will reach from kindergarten to an academy for senior citizens and thus will sustainably increase the equality of opportunity.

The city will be supported by the sponsorship of the Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig which will inter alia bring in its experience in the fields of education and training to the project. The Foundation will support the educational monitoring and the development of a communication and marketing strategy. In addition, the Foundation makes the perfect infrastructure with its "Media Campus Vila Ida" available for educational projects and events of the initiative.

In addition to numerous nationally operating foundations, 23 foundations of the Sparkasse and 13 community foundations are involved into the project "Lernen vor Ort". They are all committed in the educational sector. The foundations make their expertise and their experience in managing successful educational projects, in consulting processes and in developing innovative ideas available to the municipalities within the framework of sponsorships. In 14 municipalities local foundation combines consisting of three up to nine local foundations have been established which will jointly take over the sponsorship for their home community. The foundations have joined together in the national foundation combine “learning on the spot.”

For more information about the programme, the selected 40 municipalities and the participating foundations, visit

Source: Federal Ministry of Education and Research/initiative “learning on the spot”