Practice:Agrupamento de Escolas de Alcanena
DescriptionDescription of practiceOur organization regards self-evaluation as a collaborative, inclusive and reflexive process that enables schools to create and implement improvement plans, measure their progress, and identify their achievements. Therefore, Agrupamento de Escolas de Alcanena (Alcanena school cluster) in its search for excellence has been making use of self-evaluation procedures, focused on the CAF model since 2010. This has enabled the co-construction of a holistic knowledge of the school organization, leading to the design of action plans with great impact on the implementation of the school educational project, enhancing continuous learning, innovation and improvement, as well as staff involvement and development. Whilst making use of evidence gathered within the school’s unique context, internal and external stakeholders identify meaningful targets and actions for improvement focused on teaching and learning practices and outcomes, as well as on organization and management processes. In fact, a major step cannot be undertaken in an organization without staff full involvement at all levels – discussion and implementation – aiming at making use of teachers’ ideas and abilities for the benefit of our organization. This contribution, however, demands a special attention as far as the working environment is concerned. That is why issues such as identity, culture and well-being were taken into account, in order to maximise teachers’ involvement and consequently their development. The level of maturity of our organization is clearly demonstrated by key indicators, such as active contributions of the teachers, as well as their full participation in school initiatives and the way they integrate innovation and new challenges (over 70%).
Innovative approachesInnovative approaches of the practiceAfter CAF education self-assessment implementation, a sharing knowledge about the differences of the new generation of students has grown along with the collective assumption that all the students have the right to succeed regardless their social, cultural or physical background. This major problem was regarded as an improvement opportunity that has led to the creation of a Future Classroom lab, which differs from a regular classroom not only because of the technological equipment and the way space is arranged, but above all because of the active pedagogical methods it implies. This big step gave origin to an action plan which turned out to be a growing change in the way our teachers teach and consequently in the way students learn.
Results and outcomesResults and outcomes of the CAF implementationIt is important to underline lessons learnt from CAF self assessment, namely as far as 3 and 5 criteria are concerned. In order to accomplish our goal, some steps were undertaken:
• Full staff involvement, namely through a cascade teachers’ training plan on active methodologies and new technological devices, so that teachers were able to develop their competences. • Reinforcement of the Identity of the school cluster (composed by 23 school buildings with students from 3 to 18 years old) based on a culture of trust and pride. • Well-being and an appropriate atmosphere for teaching (working environment) and learning. • Strong and positive use of multimedia resources in order to create meaningful learning. • Systematic collective discussions and implementation of continuous self assessment procedures (CAF) gather relevant information that enables in-time decision making.CAF enables the organization to innovate and improve, because as J. Kotter states “We see, we feel, we change”.
Further informationFurther information of the practiceThis is an application form for a Good Practice Case for the 8th European CAF-User Event.
|Type of organisationType of organisation||Local or regional administration|
|Function of organisationFunction of organisation||Education|
|Size of organisationSize of organisation|
|Level of governmentLevel of government||Non-governmental|
|OrganisationName of Organisation||Agrupamento de Escolas de Alcanena|
|DepartmentDepartment of the organisation|
|AddressAddress of the organisation||Alcanena39° 27' 30.79" N, 8° 40' 11.10" W|
|ZIPZIP code (postal code)|
|CityCity, town or village||Alcanena|
|WebsiteLink to the Website of the Organisation||http://ae.alcanena.ccems.pt/|
|EmailEmail of Organisationemail@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org|
|PersonName of contact person||Ana Cláudia Cohen|
|Job titleJob title of the contact person|