San Gorg Preca College Middle School Blata l-Bajda
Address: Triq Mountbatten Blata l-Bajda
Working language during the project:
Maltese and English
Themes of the Council of Europe campaign “FREE to SPEAK, SAFE to LEARN - Democratic Schools for All” covered:
Preventing violence and bullying
Improving well-being at school
Competences from the Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture (CDC) addressed and where / how they were integrated:
Knowledge and critical understanding of the world: politics, law, human rights, culture, cultures, religions, history, media, economies, environment, sustainability
We introduced emotional literacy lessons to help students better understand themselves and others and to be able to express themselves.
Since developing language competences is of great importance to help students’ personal development, we introduced a literacy support zone to help students who come to us still unable to read and write.
We organise multicultural days to help students understand the world they live in and what lies outside their world. This allows them to take a look at and get a sense of other cultures.
We have created Prayer Spaces where students from different religions can find time to reflect and help them accept and respect different beliefs and practices.
We work on mini projects with students who have a behaviour mentor with the aim of giving back to the school and the community in general. For example, last year they collected money with which they bought games to give to the children in hospital suffering from cancer. They chose inspirational quotes, which they glued to the different board games. These projects motivate them to show concern for others.
Through the project “Winning Hearts and Minds” and other hands-on activities carried out at school, students acquire autonomous learning skills and thinking skills. They learn in a team and therefore they learn how to listen to and understand each other, how to co-operate and how to solve conflicts.
Target group age range:
11 - 15
Level of education:
Lower secondary education
Short description of the project:
The EMPAQT project is an innovative training programme for teachers, which started three years ago. The partners in this project are Trakia University – Stara Zagora, Bulgaria Centre for Creative Training Association, Sofia, Bulgaria, Regional Education Inspectorate, Silistra, Bulgaria, The Institute of Educational Services, Romania, Mugla Provincial Directorate for National Education, Turkey, Maltepe University Research Turkey and The Centre for Resilience and Social and Emotional Health of the University of Malta.
The aim of this project is to contribute to introducing inclusive pedagogies in European schools as an approach for tackling the Early School Leaving (ESL). The programme aims to reach those disadvantaged students who are more likely to be unemployed or not continue further studies. Since it is a fact that the teachers are the most important factor in all this, the EMPAQT project aims to train teachers to be the driving agents to create an environment in which equity and inclusion is fostered. It is only in such an environment that disadvantaged learners can feel supported, respected and valued. This could lead to students’ raised motivation and the number of early school leavers could be reduced.
To achieve this aim, the partners in this project set up a teachers’ training programme in each country. Several teachers and LSEs from our school had the opportunity to attend a training programme held at our school by Ms Denise Mizzi, a teacher and research analyst at The Centre for Resilience and Social and Emotional Health of the University of Malta. The training aimed to build teachers’ skills for supporting students’ personal development, for identifying and redressing concrete difficulties experienced by students at risk of ESL and of social exclusion. We had the opportunity to address our needs as teachers to be able to help the students under our care.
During the training we discussed bullying prevention, classroom management, empathy, facilitating social and emotional learning, teaching diverse and intercultural groups and making the curriculum meaningful for our students. Teachers present were given very useful and practical examples which could be used in class so as to engage students.
- Understand what causes Early School Leaving;
- Training teachers to make curriculum more meaningful for the students;
- Fostering empathy.
- Having better teacher-pupil and pupil-pupil relations;
- Raising students’ engagement for education;
- Lowering the number of students who leave school early;
- Positive change in the attitude of certain students;
- More involvement and motivation from students;
- More respect and trust between all stakeholders.
Challenges you faced
- Human resources
- Resistance from some members of staff
- Financial support
Time-frame of the project:
Three years for the EMPAQT project but other projects created during this period are ongoing.