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Educatie incluziva pentru adultii cu dizabilitati senzoriale

Grundtvig 1 project

Coordinator: Centrum Ksztalcenia Ustawicznego – Sopot, Poland

Project content

There is a need across Europe to improve greatly the access to learning and achievement of learning outcomes for disabled groups. To date, the successes that have taken place have been due mainly to temporary special projects and the funding linked to them, rather than a real embedding of an effective methodology to include learners in mainstream provision (or broaden mainstream provision to be more inclusive). Therefore, a dual problem results:- specific project-funded opportunities are by definition temporary and the existence of such initiatives can perpetuate the philosophy that such initiatives are "special cases" that will continue to exist outside of the mainstream.

 

The main aim of this project is to survey and analyse existing mechanisms, pedagogical approaches, support networks and examples of successful practices in conjunction with national education policies to examine the most effective means of reaching, retaining and improving the achievement of disabled learners across Europe. A detailed report with the input from twelve transnational partners representing 12 countries will be produced with tangible recommendations on improving the success rates of these target groups beyond temporary project income. This will directly address the long-term issue of improving retention and achievement for disabled groups.

The main thematic area in the specifc call for proposals 2003 in this network is " Adult learning opportunities for the disabled " b ut this will be achieved via addressing also the " Analysis of learners' needs , stimulation of demand among hard-to-reach adult groups"

 

 

The overall objective of this network is to create an analytical and ongoing forum into the learning needs of disabled adult learners which carries real impact because it has both a broad base in terms of its geographical and organisational make-up and in terms of its depth of knowledge and expertise. The partners have this individually at the moment but this network will deveop this into a collective, European pool of skills and experience that will inform policy makers of inclusive adult learning programmes.

 

This will be achieved through the following specific objectives:

•  the combined surveys and analyses on existing provision of initially 12 partners, but growing to include others linked by the dissemination network during the life of the network. These surveys will address succesful local, regional and national initiatives at the forefront of promoting inclusion and encouraging widening participation for adult learners throughout Europe

•  4 transnational meetings where results and outcomes are presented and collated into an ongoing report - each meeting will embrace a number of areas that will be finalised as the project progresses, but there will be one designated topic for each:-

•  country-by country comparison of support agencies (educational organisations, benefits agencies, support workers) and how they work together, including analysis on professional development needs for those working with the target group. Also, assessment of national government policy on inclusion.

•  investigations in to the ideology of learning for these target groups, including the concept of "negative independence" and how this must first be turned into dependence, before positive independence can be achieved.

•  Current pedagogical initiatives, approaches and successful case studies

•  The availability and suitability of ICT, in terms of both content and medium

•  In addition, the co-ordinators of current and recent Grundtvig projects thematically linked to this network will be invited to participate in the most appropriate meeting.

•  Investigations in to the extent of the suitability of independent learning mechanisms as an element of ODL methodology for disabled groups.

•  Comment on research findings in related areas, e.g. the Report of the Special Meeting of the High Level Group on Disability, 1997 "Employment and People with Disabilities", e.g. to what extent do weaknesses and gaps in learning opportunities affect the long-term employment prospects of disabled learners, in addition to those faced by other learners? This research will include the results of projects addressing learning exclusion drawn from each participating country and beyond - each partner will be responsible for the collation of recommendations and findings, etc., from its own country and will also use the "ODL Networking in Europe" conferencing system to contact other organisations in all of the EU and associated countries. Each partner will be linked to one other "non-contractual" partner in this was in order to make the findings as includively European as possible.

 

•  Creation of a projects's web site and computer conferencing network for presentation of all appropriate outcomes.

 

•  Formal dissemination event to coincide with the final transnational meeting, with representatives of national government and other policy makers invited.

 

•  Ongoing project policy to include and invite additional non-contractual partners to the project.

 

•  Throughout the project, the effectiveness of an Open and Distance Learning methodology in meeting this target group's needs will be assessed. Is encouraging learner independence the most effective didactic policy? How successful has ICT been in reducing, rather than causing, learner isolation? The independence methodology in this network will not be encouraging teaching and learning isolation, rather it will work on two levels:-

•  Elements specifically associated with ODL, especially in terms of learner independence, will be re-assessed to encourage more virtual peer learning opportunities.

•  The creation and monitoring of electronic support networks will also be encouraged in line with the project policies of sustainability beyond project funding and the use of ICT to empower, rather than isolate, learners.

 

Impact

The project's main impact will be that it will address the issue of learning exclusion in an holistic and objective way, so that the results and recommendations will be effective and transferable. This will influence policy makers (because cost will not be a driving factor as previous initiatives supported by additonal funding have suffered once that funding has been withdrawn) and teachers (because the quality of the learning experience will be a driving factor). The project will present methods of inclusion without disadvantaging learners and which are not reliant on long-term additional funding. Also, this network's products will be given the widest possible platfrom for dissemination, with 100 partners currently participating in the electronic conference and each of those having direct communications access to other local and regional bodies and networks.

 

The main outputs / products to be developed by the project

Documents:

•  needs anaylsis produced at the end of phase 1 detailing the practical issues facing disabled learners in Europe, identifying governmental and educational policy, support systems, funding, teaching and learning practises, learning material content, access to learning, the role of ICT, etc.,. This will be drawn from a survey of all partners and linked organisations, co-ordinated by Modex Sopot and Stockport College.

•  transnational self assessment of the performance of the partners as a functioning unit, performed at the start of phase 2 and then re-visited at the start of phase 4

Reports:

4 reports (1 produced at the end of each phase) on:

•  country-by country comparison of support agencies (educational organisations, benefits agencies, support workers) and how they work together.

•  investigations in to the ideology of learning for these target groups, including the concept of "negative independence" and how this must first be turned into dependence, before positive independence can be achieved.

•  Current pedagogical initiatives and approaches and the successful case studies

•  The availability and suitability of ICT, in terms of both content and medium

1 synthesis report produced at the end of the project, being a synthesis of reports 1 - 4 above and aforementioned documents, plus a summary of the project and its methodology in addressing the issues.

All of these will be produced in each of the native languages of the 10 participating partner organisations and will appear in paper format and in a downloadable version from the project web-site.

 

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