MY VIRTUAL TOWN: Education system – democratic force that helps to prepare students to actively participate in all aspects of economical, environment and social life in local communities

This project started at the end of 2018 with duration of 2 years, and it was funded by the EU Programme ERASMUS+. Partnership included the following 9 partners from Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Slovenia:

– Centre for Sustainability and Economic Growth from Bulgaria – Lead Partner

– Municipality of Pazardzhik, Bulgaria

– Professional High School on Economics and Management, Pazardzhik, Bulgaria

– Macedonian Geothermal Association – MAGA, Republic of Macedonia

– KJP Vodovod Kochani, Republic of Macedonia

– SOU Ljupco Santov Kochani, Republic of Macedonia

– Energy Agency KSSENA, Republic of Slovenia

– Ljudska univerza Velenje, Republic of Slovenia

– Solski center Velenje, Republic of Slovenia

High school students are immediate – “tomorrow’s” democratic force of our society who should actively participate in all aspects of economical, environment and social life in local communities. Unfortunately, performed surveys show they have scarce knowledge and are not interested in getting involved in any aspect of local community existence. The project aims to contribute in increasing the present and future generations of high schools students’ skills and competences to face different challenges in everyday social life from different perspectives and to become active members of their local communities. To achieve this, the project focuses on increased skills and competences of the teachers, for teamwork and cooperation that leads to development and implementation of common education approach for their students.

The project aims to present advantages of using of “learning by doing” students-based approach in topics of high community interest. This project will also support teachers in adopting cooperative and innovative practices with their training to apply some of the existing web 2.0 tools (OER) and eTwinning platform to increase their skills in application of ICT based techniques, which will lead to development of more attractive learning approaches towards students.
The proposed project should be implemented by 9 PP, 3 partners form each country (Bulgaria, Slovenia and Macedonia) involved, those are: 3 high schools (HS of Economics and Management (BG), HS “Ljupco Santov” (MK) and School Centre Velenje (SLO)), 3 local public bodies (Pazardzhik Municipality (BG), Public utility “Vodovod” Kocani (MK) and Ljudska univerza Velenje (SLO)) and 3 NGOs (CSEG (BG), MAGA (MK) and KSSENA (SLO)). High schools will participate with teachers (3×3) to be trained for implementation of OER in school subjects and learning by doing methods, will be part of teachers’ network and will mentor students; also a number of students (min.15×3) for practical application of their increased competences and skills in creation of Virtual Cities through team work.
CSEG, MAGA and KSSENA have responsibility to deal with coordination and organization of the project activities; preparation of education handbook; training for ICT-based tools, using of RES and implementation of EE measures; dissemination of project’s results; organization of national dissemination events. Local public bodies will be engaged in teachers’ training for community managements topics, for human rights and anti-discrimination, preparation of Document for strategic transnational partnership and increasing of public awareness.
The activities foreseen to be carried out in the frame of the project are following: project management, coordination and implementation; preparation of materials and necessary IT equipment for transnational meetings and short term trainings; short term trainings to increase teachers’ skills and competences; mentors and students’ teams work on development of “Virtual City”; development and printing of the intellectual outputs; development and maintenance of project web-site; preparation of brochures and leaflets; organization of media publications and press releases; preparation of presentations for final dissemination events.
Foreseen methodology that will be used within the short-term joint staff training events and long-term teaching assignment will be a mix of theoretical and practical participatory approaches, accompanied by using of ICT based methodologies. The most suitable is so called “learning by doing” method. The results expected to be achieved with the project activities: Handbook for teachers; Document for strategic transnational partnership; 9 HS teachers with increased skills for practical use of OER (web 2.0 tools); Established teachers’ network through eTwinning module; 9 teachers – mentors with increased competences and skills for team work to develop common theoretical and practical teaching approach on the topics related with community issues; min 45 students with increased teamwork skills in developing own educational approach for facing the challenges of active citizenship in local community; 9 students with increased skills and competences in transnational cooperation; 150 stakeholders will become familiar with new students based “learning by doing” educational approach; project Web site.
Joint team work will lead to establishment of good partnership among project partners, increase their overall competences and skills for the implementation of new joint projects in the future. Secondary schools will benefit from students’ satisfaction with the quality of learning methods, new methodologies and opportunities for research and learning, networking opportunities with other educational institutions, enhanced capacity for transnational cooperation. Educated students as a new generation of young EU citizens who will be forerunners in increasing of public awareness towards all community related issues.

Project website: ERASMUS+

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