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Action plans for further development

Based on all the experiences and Good practices of the PROGRESS project all partners developed an action plan for further development of their own school. All partners were very positive about all the inspiration and ideas the project has brought them.

This is a summary of all these innovative and ambitious plans. We wish everyone every success in realizing these plans!

CIFEA de Molina de Segura

The CIFEA de Molina de Segura’s action plan is designed to address the challenges in the agricultural sector, including the need to attract young people with skills in new technologies, promote sustainability and environmental protection, and make agricultural activity more attractive for students from urban areas. The plan includes four objectives which are differentiated into four levels: regulated training, continuous training, networks and associates, and green skills development.

The first objective aims to stabilize enrolment numbers at lower EQF levels, promote gender equality in classrooms, establish an age group of students between 18-26 years, offer more online courses and activities in digital format, direct school activities to principles based on sustainability and environmental protection, and attract foreign students. In addition, the objective includes developing modular vocational education and training and attracting students from urban areas.

The second objective focuses on continuous training for adults and training for employment, aiming to increase the number of female enrolments, incorporate environmental aspects in training for adults, recognize competence units in adults, and expand the dissemination of certification processes.

The third objective aims to strengthen the development of Erasmus+ projects and participate in international cooperation projects with non-governmental organizations, develop values of social solidarity through blood donation campaigns, sensitize against gender violence, and strengthen relationships with business associations in the sector and professional agricultural organizations.

The fourth objective aims to contribute knowledge about sustainability and environmental education, develop green skills and increase technical knowledge, and improve the dissemination of training offers.

The action plan is designed to be measurable, and indicators have been defined to monitor progress towards the defined objectives.

Savonia University of Applied Sciences

Objective of the action plan: To attract new target groups, especially international students and immigrants, and equip students with the necessary skills for the changing work life.

Tasks and Activities

  • Marketing and outreach efforts through various channels, including social media, to attract new students
  • Up-to-date and interesting study plans that follow changes in society and working life, with input from working life partners and RDI-projects
  • Creating unique and attractive facilities, such as a green campus and living labs, to appeal to students
  • Implementing different pedagogies, including day, blended, and hybrid learning, with proper tools and skills for online teaching and more interactivity in lessons
  • Motivating students through interesting lessons, assignments, and projects, as well as improving guidance and counseling services
  • Focusing on practical training periods and developing practical skills, and improving the skills of teachers and RDI staff
  • Ensuring quality in all aspects of the education program.

Green Academy

The Green Academy in Denmark has developed an action plan to anchor the results of the Progress project over the past three years within the organization. The main objective is to focus on primary school pupils who are considering choosing an ordinary high school and show them the benefits of the vocational upper secondary education (EUX).

The academy aims to attract approximately 90 students directly from primary school, with at least 30 of them choosing the vocational upper secondary education. Additionally, they plan to maintain the annual intake of students who do not come directly from primary school at around 200-220 students.

The academy intends to achieve these objectives by involving as many students, teachers, and staff as possible in different projects, both at the national and international level. They are working closely with different stakeholders such as government representatives and small-medium enterprises to create a synergy in project management. The academy is also focusing on e-learning and digital projects, student mobility, and developing modern facilities with a focus on sustainability.

Yuverta

Yuverta is the largest secondary and vocational trainer in Europe in the blue-green domain, with 36 secondary schools, 20 VET locations, and thousands of professionals trained every year. The institution’s mission is to train people for a profession in the blue-green domain and for an independent existence in society, specifically for tasks such as making agriculture more sustainable, improving biodiversity and nature, animal welfare, sustainable urbanization, health and lifestyle, increasing the quality of water and water management, reducing waste flows, energy transition, and climate. Yuverta aims to actively contribute to a sustainable world and the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Yuverta faces the challenge of attracting new target groups, particularly in urban areas, to its green education programs. The institution plans to achieve this by changing its image from agricultural education to a school with a broad offering on topics that are interesting and important to students from this decade, topics that can lead to meaningful careers and a better life for all.

To achieve its objectives, Yuverta has set overall goals, such as 80% of Yuverta’s stakeholders taking part in the realization of at least four SDGs within their region, and the integration of SDGs in all curricula to the experience of 80% of all its students and other stakeholders. The institution has also created an impact strategy on sustainability by breaking down the broad theme into smaller parts, so everyone can oversee and play a part.

Terra

Terra, an organization that has organized itself into a team-centered approach, wants to incorporate the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into its curricula and pedagogy, by installing a practorate called ‘Entrepreneurial learning with and from the SDG goals’. The primary goal of the practorate is to provide inclusive and high-quality education while striving for equal opportunities for lifelong learning for all, in connection with the regional environment, in line with SDG 4.

The practorate aims to conduct research using the ‘whole school approach for sustainable development’ and investigate how the SDGs can be incorporated into the curricula, pedagogy, and didactics of the institutions so that every student can gain experience with and knowledge about them. The research also focuses on how business operations, professionalization, and the environment of the institutions can create a learning climate to achieve this goal. The practorate hopes to attract another category of students who were not previously interested in green education by collaborating with a grey education institute.

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News The Netherlands

Visiting Terra in The Netherlands

We start at 8.00 AM in the Terra school in Meppel. The director welcomes everyone and briefly tells something about the building and its residents. According to the agenda, we then start with the presentations of the action plans, based on the results of our PROGRESS project. Everyone is impressed with each other’s plans: what beautiful, well-thought-out plans. After the presentations we quickly walk to the greenhouse where colleague Klaas tells a story about the bees that have found a place in a beehive on the school grounds since last year. Usefulness and necessity! The bees are part of the living garden that the students work on together. They too are increasingly recognizing the need for it.

The 18 added values of the Living Garden and the Living Public Space are divided into 4 pillars: PEOPLE, NATURE, CLIMATE and BUSINESS. The point is, that the student understands that, for example, by paying attention to the issues of temperature, water or air quality, one can make a contribution to the climate. 

We drive to Glimmen to get a tour in the Food Forest. Two sisters tell about the origin of the food forest and what can be found there and what is also edible. We taste a cup of tea of herbs from the forest and get a snack, also a product of the forest. A food forest produces food on the basis of the ecological principles of a natural forest. Built up in seven layers, a wide variety of natural and vital food is created from a fertile soil. Due to the wide variety of species and biotopes, a food forest contributes to nature development and biodiversity. Care for nature and soil life results in a healthy ecosystem. A food forest combines food production with nature. It is a human-designed self-sufficient ecosystem. In the long term, it can provide large groups of people with an abundance of honest products. One can find everything that grows in a forest: trees, shrubs, climbers and creepers. Especially perennial, edible species. Depending on the season, the harvest varies from various fruits, nuts, seeds and vegetables, to roots, tubers, stems, edible flowers and leaves. And of course mushrooms and honey. Everybody is enthusiastic and full of ideas for their own situation: at home, at work, there are plenty of possibilities to create a (tiny) food forest too.

After this visit we have lunch near a lake – a pity the weather is not too good.

In the afternoon we visit DonkerGroen in Groningen. DonkerGroen is a very versatile green company. They offer a wide range of services and products regarding the design of indoor and outdoor spaces

  • Realization and maintenance of outdoor greenery
  • Designing green and healthy indoor spaces
  • Construction of sustainable and circular playgrounds
  • Substrates for public space

Their vision: “We believe in the power of green. A green environment creates space, gives energy and contributes to a healthy and positive life. That is why it is becoming increasingly important to design indoor and outdoor spaces sustainably. That idea has been rooted in our DNA since the foundation of our company. We realize green and healthy indoor and outdoor spaces. We design, realize and manage these experiences based on 60 years of experience, fit and craftsmanship.

DonkerGroen produces substrates for public spaces and customized substrates for growing space improvement; from roof gardens, public gardens and city parks to sports fields and parking spaces.  We visited the playground of a school for visually impaired children where this company has built, planted and developed a lot. They are also designing several playgrounds in a sustainable and circular way. They install natural playground equipment and green schoolyards that challenge children to use their creativity and play together. They are also very creative when it comes to draining excess rainwater. We saw inspiring examples in and around the city of Groningen.

We closed this inspiring day with a dinner together in the center of Meppel.

The second day we leave at 08:00 hours to go to Sunrise Stables, the equine department of Terra, in Assen. We organise the Multiplier Event of our project. We invited all colleagues of the participating Dutch schools, all coordinators International of the Dutch Green and Grey schools and our network. There were … people attending the event.

We started the program with an introduction of the project (see ppt in Dropbox). After that, all partners showed and told about their Best Practice (see ppt’s in Dropbox and the report of the Multiplier Event).

After all presentations, a discussion with the audience was started. Because it was an almost totally international group, we were curious about the student numbers: increasing or decreasing, the sustainable activities of their schools, their own interests in this subject. Very interesting.  

After a joint lunch, we left for the SuikerTerrein/ Sugar terrain in Groningen. The knowledge workplace for the green sector. Our innovative and sustainable approach to outdoor education offers unique opportunities for personal growth and professional development. The Terra Sugar Terrain is a unique place in Groningen with a special history. Terra develops education here that fits the agenda of the city. Important aspects such as participation, employment and social sustainability are stimulated. That all happens by the people of the Innovation & Collaboration Team.

Terra believes that innovation is the key to growth and development. Terra focuses on the broad green sector and drives innovation towards a green future where there is room for people, animals, nature and economic progress. We do this by working together with partners and experts in this sector. Together Terra creates education for their pupils and students so that they can use everything they have learned to work and make an essential contribution to the society of the future.

What that looks like?

Terra works on projects that fulfil their objectives. Projects are:

– Green is art

– Green in the classroom

– The green living environment

– Urban farming

– Ancient varieties and crops

By working with projects, Terra creates ‘breeding grounds’ where students, lecturers and the business community can experiment together. Education then takes place ‘outside the school’, in an inspiring environment. Finally, Terra believes it is important to develop students and employees at an international level. Internationalization is therefore an important part of Innovation&Collaboration Team.

We see examples of what can be done with sheep’s wool. What you can make from discarded old jeans. How you can reuse ‘old stuff’ by first cleaning it, then pimping it or giving it another function (pants become bag, jacket becomes skirt). That you can dye clothing or wool with paint that is made from plants and is therefore not polluting or harmful to the environment. What creativity and possibilities!

We walk on this wonderful piece of land near the city and arrive at a Yurt. A place to meet, brainstorm or just chill. This Yurt is next to a number of Tiny houses under construction. These are built by architecture students, are decorated by interior design students, get green roofs by Terra students, as well as vertical gardens that will be built there. What a special collaboration! A little further on we see the skeleton of a drome made of Azobe wood that has been in the water for ages. Now it can be re-used by editing it. The wood is rock hard but can be worked and bent. The round shape was created by means of smart, open connections.

We have a drink together, sign the certificates and fill in the evaluation forms, before we return to Meppel to have the last diner together. We discuss that we will organize a final digital meeting for the last loose ends.

Two days is short but we used every hour of it – a good experience that provided us with new energy and ideas on sustainable and innovative subjects.

Thanks to all for a very pleasant TPM!

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Countries Finland Marketing & Communication

Info magazine OPINPOLKU for marketing agricultural schools

A colorful attractive magazine is a good way to communicate about all the different school options in a region. You can rerach a large public by sending it with the most popular national or regional newspaper. This was the approach of Savonia university in Finland.

The magazine was published with newspaper Maaseudun Tulevaisuus. Maaseudun Tulevaisuus. This is the 3rd popular newspaper in Finland and it is published by The Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK).

There were 44 pages, where 20 different vocational schools introduced their schools and studies.  In the magazine was also an article written by Antti Kurvinen,  Minister of Agricultulture and Forestry.

The magazine was published just before the students had to apply to their studies beginning next autumn.

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Countries Curriculum & Program The Netherlands

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