Minister of National Education Joanna Kluzik-Rostkowska announced the 2015/16 school year as the Open School Year. The new edition of the “School with Class 2.0” Program is held also under the slogan of openness. The “Open Yourself the School with Class” conference was planned in such a way that the participants could get as much practical knowledge and skills as possible.
he meeting was opened by Alicja Pacewicz, the Vice President of the Center for Citizenship Education. In her address she discussed the meaning of the open school term and what the open school should be like to fall within the definition of openness. The definition proposed by her names nine qualities. The open school:
• is a part of community and not a fortress;
• sees and helps to solve real problems;
• is friendly towards its students who in turn are willing to attend it;
• gives a sense of security – includes and not excludes;
• allows good and effective learning;
• develops competencies suitable in the 21st century;
• applies new technologies and resources (especially those open);
• is open to the parents’ (and grandparents’) needs and proposals;
• is flexible and ready for change (learns itself).
After the part on the school openness, Katarzyna Maniszewska, the Program Director of the Polish-American Freedom Foundation, took the floor and welcomed the guests. PAFF has been the School with Class 2.0 program partner for many years. Katarzyna Maniszewska pointed to the aspects of wise and thoughtful use of new technologies that accompanies the School with Class program and encouraged schools to familiarize with the wide range of courses and materials offered by the “Learning Schools” Program of the Center for Citizenship Education and PAFF.
Agata Łuczyńska, the Director of Programs with Class Division and Marta Puciłowska, the Program Chief Coordinator briefed the participants on the new edition of the program. Then, the participants split up into workshop groups.
Each participant could select two out of nine workshops offered by the organizers; they included such as “Read with understanding”, “Discover, experiment, inquire”, “Open resources and copyrights”, “Reversed lesson” or “The Students’ Research Forum”.
The inaugural conference was the first in a series of meetings with the “School with Class 2.0” participants. In the present school year, the organizers are planning also to carry out four local conferences in various parts of Poland.
The “School with Class 2.0” Program has been implemented since 2000, as part of the School with Class initiative, that promotes the use of ICT in learning and teaching. The program is managed by the Center for Citizenship Education Foundation and Gazeta Wyborcza daily. The Polish-American Freedom Foundation is the partner of the initiative.
The program’s website: www.szkolazklasa.pl.