The project “Methodology for Early warning Detection of Risk for Early School Leaving (ESL)” SEE-ME is a EU funded project under the Erasmus+ program, which sets out to identify effective intervention strategies that are known to work to improve student engagement and increase completion of school for “at risk students”. Effective strategies and processes will be outlined in a methodological handbook. The development of this methodological handbook will be done step wise:
– through research on reasons for school leaving, on indicators for students at risk as well as on good practices to prevent this to happen;
– interviews with different stakeholders (like students, teachers, mentors, parents etc.) on the issue of engagement and methods to increase school completion;
– peer groups discussion on draft guidelines;
– training of school representatives in the usage of the final version of the methodological handbook.
This communication highlights main conclusions of the survey in the five participant countries (Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden).
RESULTS OF PRELIMINARY SURVEY
The preliminary results suggest that students and teachers have some opinions in common but student may also differ in focus on ESL, causes and prevention from teachers. Unsophisticated said, students see solutions for ESL in more inspiring teachers and learning climate, while teachers have a preference for selection and custom education and guidance:
• In short we see that in all countries the knowledge of ESL differs, although the half of the respondents has never given the subject a thought. In addition, we see in all countries a belief that working and having employment is more important than completion of vocational education. However, in Poland, Spain and Italy students recognize that a lot of students stop with and leave their course, and they, along with the Dutch students, don’t see that there is a lot of publicity on the subject ESL, a lot of attention on student’s progress and guidance, and creating a positive and inclusive climate, unlike the teachers by the way.
• Students and teachers do think the same about the causes of ESL: lack of cognitive capacity of the student required for completion of education at that particular level, mismatch of interest, ideas and objectives regarding VET education between student and course and lack of interest in education compared to earning money and having a job.
• To select students at the gate is seen by teachers as a good policy to prevent ESL, in contrast to students. They think that to train teachers in new and inspiring teaching methods and to invest in how to work with and to inspire the individual youngster will be adequate solutions.
• Both students and teachers think that monitoring students’ progress, taking preventive actions in time (like remedial teaching, extra training and guidance) and creating a positive and attractive learning climate within the VET institute are good interventions to prevent ESL.
• Besides that, teachers have suggested that investing in closer relationships with as well as better knowledge of the regional labour market and creating more opportunities to adapt education to individual students needs will be working policy interventions to prevent ESL.
• Finally, regarding early school leaving students suggested to other students that If they are not managing the study load, to contact the dean and look for support/advice. Teachers preferred to suggest that if students are not satisfied with the course / school, “do not hesitate and loose precious time: orient yourself and change courses”.
Further information about project activities and outcomes: