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Month: July 2024

Exploring New Paths to Inclusive Education in Cyprus

In an increasingly interconnected and diverse world, the importance of inclusive education has never been more apparent. At its core, inclusive education believes that every child has the right to learn and grow in a supportive environment. This approach recognises each student’s unique skills and adapts teaching methods accordingly.

Instead of isolating students with disabilities or with fewer opportunities like migrants, inclusive education integrates them into mainstream classrooms, providing the support and resources they need to succeed. As a result, it has the potential of not only enhancing academic achievement but also fostering social and emotional development. By learning in diverse environments, students develop empathy, cultural competence, and critical thinking skills, which are essential for success in an increasingly globalised world.
Although the advantages of inclusive education are evident, achieving effective and consistent implementation throughout the entire system remains difficult. Schools often find themselves facing challenges such as insufficient resources, lack of teacher training, and resistance to change. Consequently, as the recent findings of the European Commission show, many member states not only miss out on leveraging the full potential of inclusive education, but tend to dismiss its importance. An approach that deepens the associated issues and challenges resulting in low proficiency and early school leaving in the process.

Success of Inclusive Hubs in Cyprus

In a bid to address current gaps, CARDET and the Institute of Development have partnered with fellow European organisations in a common pursuit to support holistic approaches to teaching and learning and creating stronger interagent communities. Through a common initiative – Inclusive Hubs – the partner organisations aim to support the national strategies to facilitate stronger communication between schools and local communities and provide measures to foster inclusion. Towards that end, the partners combined their expertise and experiences together to build engaging and innovative teaching materials to empower educators, students and parents to work collectively and transform schools into inclusive hubs. These were very well received and celebrated when put into practice, in the piloting of the project at the Pallouriotissa A Primary school throughout May and June. 

During this period, CARDET and IoD used the innovative educational materials developed by the partnering countries to showcase to students, parents and school staff, how inclusive education can be fostered within an existing system and be used to celebrate the differences, as well as find the common ground. 

The activities ranged from small games, to exploring the world of music around the world, sharing folklore stories from different countries, as well as compiling a delightful recipe book packed with traditional dishes from students’ homelands. These activities culminated in a touching video of students sharing their favourite things about their school, as well as an impressive final event filled with performances of local and migrant students, celebrating our wonderfully diverse community. 

Through these fun activities, engaging conversations and exchange of opinions, the Inclusive Hubs project has been instrumental in highlighting the importance of acceptance, equality and inclusion within the school premises, as well as outside of it. While the series of activities left the school staff and young learners inspired with actionable take-aways on how to better our school communities, this is merely a step on the long road to making inclusive education a standard across all the schools on the island. 

To be a part of the change and learn more about the Inclusive Hubs initiative, please visit the official project website

VideoTeach Announces Its Latest Updates in a Fresh Newsletter

The VideoTeach project, aimed to develop educators’ digital competences and promote video education as the main tool for digital teaching, is happy to announce key milestones have been achieved towards making this goal a reality across the rural areas in Europe! In particular, with the recent launch of the online self-assessment tool and a dedicated online Video Course on Youtube, rural teachers can now easily expand their competences and introduce digital tools and videos in their classrooms.

Want to access the course or just curious how this will help reshape the landscape of education and sustainability? Download the newsletter below for more information.

The Official Launch of the EPIC Project

The EPIC project (Entrepreneurial Citizenship for Social Change) officially launched with a successful kick-off meeting in Athens, marking the beginning of an inspiring journey aimed at empowering youth workers and young people in the Western Balkans to become active citizens and social entrepreneurs.

EPIC focuses on social entrepreneurship, offering youth the chance to leverage their skills to address social issues, reduce youth unemployment, and foster community development. The project achieves this through two key components: the Training Programme on Social Entrepreneurship and the Toolkits for Development & Operation of Social Enterprises.

At the kick-off meeting, EPIC partners from Albania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Cyprus, Greece, and Kosovo gathered to discuss the project’s objectives, strategies, and upcoming activities. These discussions have set the stage for collaborative efforts to promote active citizenship and social entrepreneurship in the region.

To find out more about EPIC initiative, visit the project’s website and stay tuned for more updates on Facebook and Instagram.

EPIC – Entrepreneurial Citizenship for Social Change

Recognising the power of young people to drive change in their society, the EPIC project is here to empower youth workers and young people in the Western Balkans to become active citizens and social entrepreneurs. It helps participants identify social issues, develop innovative ideas, and, with the right guidance and support, transform these ideas into successful businesses.

Aligning with the EU’s EASI (2020) perspective, the project emphasises social enterprises’ role in addressing social issues through civic commitment, particularly among disadvantaged groups. By focusing on social entrepreneurship, EPIC provides youth with the opportunity to apply their skills to create innovative solutions for social problems, reducing youth unemployment, and fostering community development. Social enterprises create jobs in underserved social and environmental sectors, providing meaningful opportunities and combating social exclusion, skill gaps, and financing barriers.

Specifically, the EPIC project aims to:

  • Foster cooperation across different regions of the world through joint initiatives
  • Raise the capacity of organisations working with young people outside formal learning
  • Support the development of youth work
  • Promote non-formal learning activities, with a view to improve the level of competences while ensuring the active participation of young people in society