Quality Assurance of Education for Democratic Citizenship
Teachers and principals of the 6 participating school in Dimbovita county will be able to analyse the EDC and plan their school development in this respect by utilising self-evaluation, school-based evaluation and mutual evaluation methods and techniques. These means make the stakeholders aware of school's and community's resources as they can design the most efficient and suitable way of developing a democratic culture at school level.
The main goal of the current project is to enable people working and learning in 6 schools of Dimbovita county to perform the most efficient EDC and/or HRE activities based on the available regulations and resources and their own needs and concerns.
This is to happen by challenging teachers: - to critically consider all aspects of EDC and HRE (curriculum, manuals, training courses, school atmosphere, their own performance, etc.);
- to develop an efficient civic education policy at school level;
- to set up school development planning of EDC;
- to outline school quality assurance system;
- to work in a professional team.
The project is rooted in the Council of Europe's guide: Tool for quality assurance of education for democratic citizenship (EDC) in schools, published in 2005, and it is supported by the local teacher training center (CCD Dimbovita).
As a result of this project the 6 participating schools will have a concrete experience in developing holistic systematic approaches to EDC or HRE and they will be the first institutions outlining a quality assurance system of EDC.
The quality assurance system within each school will be visible through:
- more (pro)active and more credible civic educators;
- a more democratic school management and a better leadership;
- more realistic and more efficient partnerships with their community;
- more deeply involved and more responsive students;
- a more democratic environment.
The material products of the project are as follows: a comprehensive EDC policy, a realistic planning of EDC and an outline of the quality assurance system of EDC for each school taking part in the project. They will be shared in the project group and posted on the specialized civic education site of the Institute for Educational Sciences (www.civica-online.ro) as well as on TEHNE site (www.tehne.ro). The process of developing these documents and practices will be observed during the project year. The participants themselves (assisted by the four school trainer-facilitator people) will measure their progress by looking at: - how efficiently they work as a team within their own school;
- whether they are aware of the role of various aspects of civic education (relationships, curriculum, teacher training etc.);
- how they can make decisions and follow them;
- what kind of partnerships they develop outside their school;
- how they manage conflicts and tensions occurring between various school actors;
- how they can mobilize and report various results back to their colleagues;
- how they initiate new projects and activities at class or school level;
Each participant will analyse her/his own performance and contribution to the effort of the school team. Each school team will read and watch the documents and experience of the other teams and become aware of the problems that could come out in their own institution as well as give suggestions to their colleagues.
The project is supported by the Department of State, Public Affairs Section in Bucharest.
The project lasts from October 2006 till September 2007.
Schools "I. Alexandru Bratescu-Voinesti" and "Grigore Alexandrescu" in Tirgoviste Vocational High School "N. Cioranescu" in Tirgoviste
Theoretical High School of Gaesti (a small town in Dimbovita county)
School of Manesti-Ungureni (a village 25 km on the road to Cimpulung Muscel)
School in Lazuri (a village 8 km on the road to Bucharest)
1. Initial workshop (13-15 October, 2006) aiming to help the 24 participants:
- to become familiar with the concept and procedures (democratic citizenship, quality assurance, self-evaluation, school development planning) of the Quality Assurance Tool developed by the Council of Europe;
- to be able to analyse various types of EDC carried out in the participating schools;
- to improve their analysis, evaluation and planning skills;
- to enhance their group work capability;
- to be motivated to start a programme on quality assurance of EDC in their schools;
- to understand the strong linkage between carrying out efficient EDC activities and developing a quality assurance system at school level.
2. School-based workshops meant to set up and train the six teams (November 2006). Up to 10 teachers in each school participated in interactive sessions.
3. EDC analysis (by April 2007). Each school team evaluates the EDC profile and writes a report. The most challenging tasks are to identify the indicators/descriptors of various EDC dimensions and design proper tools to assess them. SWOT analyses were also very interesting and resourceful moments.