PRINED - Inclusive Education in Slovakia
The project PRINED concerns the inclusion of children and pupils of socially disadvantaged background. The main aim of this project is to enhance the successful implementation of compulsory education.
The target group of The National Project PRINED are children and pupils from socially disadvantaged environment that come from participating 50 kindergartens and 100 primary schools. This initiative includes parents, teachers and professional staff, including social educators, psychologists, special psychologists, speech therapists, remedial teachers (total of 354) and their teaching assistants (total of 250).
The professional staff identified possible causes for pupils' low attainment and behavioural problems within the environment of kindergartens and primary schools. In close cooperation with the parents and teachers, the professional staff sought ways to implement interventions (dépistage) which formed the basis for incentive schemes that were aimed at appropriately motivating children and pupils to study and learn.
This project was directly supported by supplying schools with additional didactic material, sports equipment, musical instruments, arts tools, educational games and toys, gardening equipment, cooking utensils, workshop tools, and various other equipment. In some cases of schools for children from socially disadvantaged families, the project even supplied basic sanitary amenities and hygiene products.
In the afternoon, after-school sessions offered parts of curricular subjects and tuition included in the time that was otherwise predominantly filled with various creative tasks and extra-curricular activities, such as crafts and manual skills-enhancing activities. This was at a ratio of one hour of curricular remedial education to two hours of play and other structured activities. It was this approach that allowed the professional staff to intervene and create a flexible space for learning. Retrospectively, it is now believed this approach has ultimately helped to mitigate the negative causes of low learning outcomes.
In the period of school year 2014/2015, there were 20,535 afternoon after-school clubs, involving a total of 19,500 students including 6,600 students from socially disadvantaged backgrounds. The project PRINED incorporated various teaching methodologies, programs and models. School principals evaluated a number of them, including the incentive program, all-day educational system, and interest groups. Based on a survey, the project confirmed, to a degree of statistical significance, the positive impact on individual learning performance, especially that of children from socially disadvantaged backgrounds and the children who attended the incentive program and all-day educational system. Despite its short life span (only 20 months), PRINED was positively accepted and received by both the participating professional employees and the children and pupils.