In the course of 21 years the program gathered some 10,000 schools. 160,000 teachers attended training sessions offered by various “LES” components.
“LES” introduces into the daily operation of schools an original quality assurance system that improves pupils’ learning outcomes. This is achieved by increasing the competencies and autonomy of the teaching staff, strengthening the school principal’s position, and improving teamwork. The program offers online courses for teachers, workshops for teacher boards, post-graduate studies and conferences for principals, during which participants learn the principles of formative assessment and other educational practices. “LES” schools develop ways to perfect teacher performance, monitor results of performed activities, and share best practices with each other. The “Learning Schools” program improves quality in areas key to school operations, namely: the effectiveness of teaching and learning, organizing the functioning of a school as a learning institution, and ensuring cooperation between the school and its outside environment.
In the course of 21 years the program gathered some 10,000 schools, of which 3,000 participated in its core part that aimed at comprehensive school development by introducing a “formative assessment”. 160,000 teachers attended training sessions offered by various “LES” components.
Since the 2017/18 school year, “LES” has been carried out under new conditions resulting from the far-reaching changes introduced into the Polish educational system by the Ministry of Education. The program, adjusted to the needs imposed by the new reality, continues to be very popular with teachers and schools all over Poland.
In 2021, the “LES” program offer was adjusted to the pandemic situation on an ongoing basis. Online courses, webinars but also onsite meetings on methods of working with students were attended by over 10,000 teachers and school principals.
For many years, apart from the large-scale training and workshops, the “Online Teachers Academy” (OTA) has offered e-courses for teachers of numerous subjects from all types of schools and kindergartens. These courses prepare teachers to apply modern methods and techniques in working with pupils. “OTA” offers eight different types of one-year courses which attract some 800 teachers each time. In the past pandemic year the most popular “OTA” course was “School on the Web”, a course dedicated to methods of remote learning.
The many years of “LES” experience is used in various educational initiatives financed from EU funds. These include: “The Student Academy”, “Digital School”, “The Learning Schools Academy for Education Leaders”, and the “School for the Innovator” introduced in 2019. The purpose of these initiatives is to develop competencies which students will need in adult life, by promoting innovative teaching and evaluation methods among teachers and school principals, and by reshaping the organization of schoolwork. So far, more than 10,000 schools have taken part in these initiatives.
In cooperation with Collegium Civitas, Postgraduate Courses for Education Leaders were continued. Since 2005 they have been participated in by over 500 school principals. In response to challenges caused by the pandemic and distance teaching, the series of “Resilient School” meetings have been organized and attended on a regular basis by some 300 education managers.
PAFF is a partner to the “School with Class” initiative which promotes modern educational solutions among schools and teachers, using IT and communication technologies, the design thinking method, and the agile methodology. In total, it has gathered more than 9,000 schools from all over Poland and nearly 150,000 teachers. It is the continuation of the “School with Class” campaign initiated in 2002, inspired by “LES” and carried out by the Center for Citizenship Education Foundation in cooperation with the “Gazeta Wyborcza” daily. In the past the campaign included such initiatives as: “Teacher with Class”, “Lego, Cogito, Ago”, “Student with Class”, and “School of Thinking”. In 2020, the entire program was carried out mostly online, with more than 10,000 teachers taking part in numerous webinars, remote training sessions and meetings. 80 schools from all over Poland enrolled in the 19th round of the “School with Class” that was started in 2021. The format of classes was adjusted to the pandemic conditions. Teachers attended online workshops and meetings where they could learn various methods of working with students in distance education. Also launched was the “School with Class Club” to which over 200 teachers, who have participated in the action in previous years, applied.
The Foundation has disbursed $14,685,474 in grants, including $801,328 for the current edition of the program.