SEE-ME -Methodology for Early Warning detection of risk for Early School Leaving (ELS)-
Programme: Erasmus +
Key Action: K2- Cooperation and Innovation for Good Practices.
Action: Strategic Partnerships for school education
Start date: 01-09-2014
Folkuniversitetet stiftelsen kursverksamheten vid Uppsala Universitetet, Uppsala (Sweden)
USRV Ufficio Scolastico Regionale per il Veneto, Venice (Italy)
Revalento , Tilburg (Netherlands)
Stichting Saxion, Enschede (Netherlands)
Documenta, Santander (Spain)
IES Hermanos Machado, Dos Hermanas (Spain)
Semper Avanti, Wrocław (Poland)
This proposal aims to address the role and responsibility of school in relation to the problem of Early School Leaver (ESL). Rationale of and background to the project is based on a) a research project that Folkuniversitetet carried out among 9 upper secondary schools in Sweden concerning ESL, b) the experiences of the partners in this proposal, c) European and international research.
The research by Folkuniversitetet
During 2010, Saxion University and Folkuniversitetet initiated a study concerning ESL. A follow up study was carried out in 2012. Both studies covered 9 schools in 7 municipalities, spread from north to south Sweden. The 2006 years study showed that early school leavers were not a homogenous group. There were numerous reasons for a youngster to decide to leave the school early. When interviewed during the research project about their reasons for leaving school early, students emphasized particularly the individual student relationship with the teacher and/or the school culture, seeing the school as non-stimulating, and facing a lack of choice or inability to take subjects due to course or timetable structures. Other reasons include having poor results or not feeling smart enough to pass subjects at higher than Year 10 level; perceiving a lack of support, alternatives, relevance, and opportunity to be referred on for help and advice; and seeing school rules and regulations in a negative way. The follow up study 2012 showed that the situation has gone worse. The above result is also confirmed by European research. ESL constitutes a tremendous waste of potential, for individual, social and economic development. On average, 53 % of early school leavers in EU are unemployed. Tackling early school leaving is a stepping stone towards improving opportunities for young people as well as smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. Further early school leaving creates high individual, social and economic costs.
The study of Saxion university, Folkuniversitetet and partners statistics showed that the process to the decision of pupil to leave the school early can be between 3 to 6 months. The first sign is truancy, the pupil is absent from some lectures and later increase to more than half of the lectures before he/she decide to quit the school. The interesting outcome of our study was that in average the first reaction of the schools comes after 20-30 % absentee and when it reaches 40% then other parties get involved to address pupil truancy. When this process starts, roles and responsibilities were not clear. Majority of the schools relied upon social care and parents to solve the problem. The main reason they mentioned was lack of resources. The conclusion our study made was that schools lacked any kind of early warning mechanism. The first reaction from the school, came when the pupil were already in very difficult situation.
According to European and international research preventative emphasis is recommended, because it would be more efficient and effective than actions needed after drop out or when the process towards ESL has proceeded far. Schools cannot alone prevent all kind of ESL; however they can decrease the number of young pupils who are to enter the risk group to reach early school leaving. Our study showed that there is a need of an early warning mechanism or methodological tool which makes the school to pay attention to a pupil at risk at as early stage as possible and take proper actions to prevent ESL. This project aims to address the lack of such mechanism.
This project set out to identify effective intervention strategies that are known to work to improve student engagement and increase completion of school for “at risk students”. Our proposal has a different or complementary aim, it intends to develop an early warning mechanism for school in order to prevent ESL.
3. TARGET GROUP
– Teachers, school staff and management, youth and parental NGOs
– Local/regional and national school authorities, teachers union and teacher colleges, association of school staff and management, national and youth NGOs at national level and European.
– European networks related to school and ESL -problem