Working group Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia briefing

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  • 1. ETF Conference, Tel Aviv, 11-13 November 1. Reflections from school visits – Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, Ort Givatayim The school has 505 students. They accept all, but work hard with all of them in order to improve their score. They presented some students who were enrolled with 50-60% average score from primary school, but then raised it up to 90%. Average score of all students is very high, 76% of students choose science and technology courses as electives. They receive national level prizes for excellence in teaching. Possible actions to be implemented in our countries, based on experience from the school visit: - Strategic planning and long-term objectives in schools are important, and should be done by schools in our countries. Incentives for achieving results should be provided for school directors and other staff. The criteria for incentives can include improved results of students, better cooperation with businesses, etc. - Holistic mapping tool used in the school to follow the progress of students. Important and should be implemented by our schools as well, after looking for possible good examples from other countries as well, and working on amendments that would make the tool appropriate for our schools. - School works successfully on developing appropriate system of values among students. Very important in our countries as well, although cannot be done by schools only, but requires support of the entire society and involvement of many different stakeholders. In attempts to achieve this, close cooperation with parents is also very important. - Students exchange has proven to be effective in increasing students’ satisfaction and stronger connection with the school, which often results in improved performance of students. This can be used in our countries, first by improving exchange of students within the region, and then with the EU. - A system of continuous education of teachers should be established. The education should include work with students with disabilities and other students with special needs. 2. Country team’s answers to four questions - Bosnia-Herzegovina a. Difference that the project made in the country - emphasized the role of schools in promoting social cohesion - promoted multicultural approach to education - offered a range of innovative solutions for dealing with drop-outs, socially excluded people, etc. - explained that investments in social inclusion are less expensive than costs of dealing with socially excluded people.
  • 2. b. Measures taken during the project - Short-, medium- and long-term goals for social inclusion in schools incorporated in strategic documents in the country, - curricula changes, e.g. “democracy and human rights” subject instead of “military training”, or “comparative religions” subject introduced, - advisors for social inclusion and special education employed in regional pedagogical institutes. c. Measures in the pipeline - Project used to identified ideas for IPA funding, e.g. development of social inclusion index for schools, “friendly school for all students”, improvement of school infrastructure, cross-border cooperation between schools. d. Remaining challenges - continuous professional education of teachers, - extension of activities related to social inclusion to the labour market, e.g. government incentives for establishment of social enterprises, - enhancement of cooperation between school s and health and social protection institutions.