3 Project Priorities
The main priority of the Partnership is to promote a deeper understanding, by pupils, of the physical environment, both natural and man-made, in which they live. This will be fostered by the priorities, methodology and Partnership Plan elaborated on throughout this application.
The work is predicated on certain notions. Firstly, that an awareness of issues relating to sustainability, conservation, ecology, global warming and renewable resources should be developed at an early age. Secondly, that such an awareness produces practical implications and outcomes for the wider school community as well as the individual child. Thirdly, that the outcomes will have life-long implications for both learning and how the pupils, as adults, will conduct themselves in society and fourthly, that the intentions will best be brought about by the development of an international collaborative Partnership.
Pupils should be able to discuss issues at the appropriate level and offer possible approaches for dealing with these in a comparative international context. The ability to reason, develop arguments and draw conclusions are skills which are transferable to other areas of education. The development with a cross-cultural collaborative framework in a scientific field will be innovative. The development of the methodology is part of the work of the Partnership and the documentation relating to this methodology will form an outcome of the Partnership.
Wider school communities will come to understand that scientific endeavour is possible from an early age and that it has practical demonstrable benefits on an everyday level.
The second horizontal priority is one of the main platforms of the Partnership which will ensure that both teachers and learners acquire and develop digital skills and learning methods. Wider school communities will benefit from the availability of open educational resources developed within the Partnership. The methods of connecting classrooms and deploying digital devices and content are contained within the application and it is the collaborative working which will stimulate both the activities and the research and development of innovative approaches within Partner Schools. Each of the Partners is committed to mobilizing all stakeholders, staffs, pupils, families and school organizational partners, in developing the role of digital technologies within their schools.
All three priorities support the intention of the Partnership that the benefits of the collaborative work and innovation will be felt by all school wider communities, particularly where there is relative economic or social deprivation. Each of the Partners is committed to improving their capacity to adapt, promote and stimulate innovation and exploit the potential of technologies and digital content. They will ensure that all members of staff acquire high digital competences, whilst the Partnership itself is a community demonstrating the promotion of good practice and in-service training.
All of this leads to innovation for learners and the development of the basic and transversal skills. The Partnership will publish comparative documents relating to the work and activities of the Partnership and will contribute in whatever way possible to Open Educational Resources. The nature of the resources and the manner in which they should be visible and widely accessible is part of the work of the Partnership during the next three years. The promotion of high quality learning opportunities will be available not only to pupils, but also to members of staff and any members of schools' wider communities who become involved in the activities of the Partnership. The Partnership, in developing blended learning, will combine face-to-face, collaborative, online and video conferencing teaching, which will increase pupils' motivation and the efficacy of learning.
The technology of assessment will be addressed by the Partnership and the wealth of experiences available will not only address the nature of assessment but will also focus, in line with the EU 2013 Communication, "more on what the learner is capable of doing rather than on the mere acquisition of information or on what the learner is capable of repeating". Increasingly, through a range of different IT programmes, schools are developing personalized learning for pupils and the experience and knowledge of these programmes will be shared between all Partner Schools and implemented.
The Partnership will promote practical, active, stimulating and beneficial scientific teaching in the ecological fields of conservation, recycling and renewables and will do this through a programme of innovation in the Partner Schools using collaborative methods in all their fields of endeavour and employing techniques which meet the needs of staff and pupils operating in a range of learning styles and techniques. The methodology has two guidelines of being cross-curricular and meeting the needs of all pupils.