Reopening of schools: new opportunities for collaboration between schools and other stakeholders

Image: Gerd Altmann /

The concept of schools working in partnership with other services and stakeholder groups is frequently discussed. The reopening of school sites can be an opportunity to explore new ways of collaborating for the benefit of the wider school community. This month we bring you three examples of learning communities.

Melting Potes – The case of Toulouse

The city of Toulouse has one of the highest demographic growth rates in France, with 4.4% of its population being under the age of three and 18 births on average per day. The city’s Early Childhood Department supported the Melting Potes project, run by the NGO Unis-Cités, which focuses on the integration of refugees and migrants. Specifically, it pairs a young French-speaking person with a young person who does not speak French, to develop language and interpersonal skills. The activities are done with the support of professional social workers. In addition, awareness-raising actions on issues such as health or education are organised for migrants and Roma people living in deprived areas.

The European project VALUES contributed to the expansion of the programme by helping the collaboration between Melting Potes and the city. The next steps include creating an Early Childhood Referent for the support of non-native families, and a mobile children’s and families’ meeting place.

Support for families – The case of Madrid

The city of Madrid was affected immensely by the COVID-19 pandemic. One third of the households have seen reduction in income with the majority being single parents. Nevertheless, the city council responded with measures aimed at keeping essential services open and providing help to the families most affected by the health and economic crisis.

The support offered included healthy meals sent home for children from municipal nurseries, and a prepaid card for the purchase of food, the Family Card. Guides were also published to raise awareness on how to handle lockdown with children according to their age and family situation. Municipal nurseries created resources and videoconferences for interactive work with children and the Commission of Children and Adolescents website provided proposals for leisure, support and current news about the pandemic. In addition, as a response to lockdown measures, limitations to movements as well as to physical and emotional disconnection from school, the city and its youth centres will begin to provide psychological services from June 2021. See the complete plan here.

The SpeelPath4Teachers project

The SpeelPath4Teachers project

Speech and Language Pathology Interactive Tools for Teachers at Initial Education is a project funded by Erasmus+ and involves schools, companies, universities and an NGO. It addresses two major needs: the need for high-quality education and the need for tools for early recognition of speech and language pathology in children.

SpeelPath4Teachers created an online tool for detecting a speech and language pathology for teachers in kindergartens and primary schools which is tailored to the specifics of different spoken languages. It can be downloaded freely so that teachers, parents and caregivers have easy access.

The results of the project are already used by teachers, NGOs and other stakeholders in their day-to-day work and can be found below:

See more information on the project on its website.

  1. Speech and language therapy childhood education report
  2. Benchmarks for speech and language therapy education
  3. Speech and language therapy online tools
  4. Resource pack for teachers at initial education

See more information on the project on its website.