The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Educational mobility agency Movetia remains private

The educational mobility agency Movetia will remain private. On Monday, the Council of States did not support the Federal Council's proposal to convert it into a public-law institution. Movetia fulfils the task of promoting mobility in education well as a private organization, according to the Council majority.

It thus followed the majority of its Committee for Science, Education and Culture (WBK-S) by 34 votes to 4 with 5 abstentions. The Movetia agency has proven its worth in educational and cultural exchange programs since it was founded in 2017, said committee spokesperson Benedikt Würth (center/SG).

In its current form as a foundation, it is compatible with the federal government's principles of good corporate governance. These principles are also not legally binding. In addition, it is a joint task between the Confederation and the cantons. In the event of a transfer, the cantons would only have three members on the Board of Directors. This would not be compatible with cantonal school sovereignty.

Furthermore, a better compatibility of a public institution with the requirements for a national agency within the framework of EU education programs is not apparent. As a result of the SVP mass immigration initiative, Switzerland lost its connection to the EU exchange program Erasmus.

The Federal Council justified the transfer of Movetia to a public-law institution on the grounds of good administrative management and overall supervision by the Federal Council and Parliament. This was in response to a report by the Swiss Federal Audit Office (SFAO).

Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin, head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER), referred in vain to the conflicting roles arising from the cantons' involvement in the management as customers. Moreover, all the funds for Movetia came from the federal government. The proposal was the best solution for Movetia.

According to the Federal Council, Movetia supported over 35,000 exchanges in Switzerland and abroad in 2022. The conversion received broad support in the consultation process. The bill goes to the National Council. According to the Federal Council's plans, the new Movetia Act will come into force together with the new funding period for education, research and innovation and the 2025 Cultural Dispatch.


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