3. Support to learners

3.7. Monitoring learners at risk

Learners may go through difficult periods in their social and/or family lives or may have negative school experiences that throw them off track. Early detection of learning difficulties, socio-emotional distress, or disengagement is vital – before they manifest through school absenteeism, or inappropriate behaviour. Schools need to establish an early warning and monitoring system in collaboration with the family. Effective identification and monitoring should not be seen as a bureaucratic and disciplinary process that only records and responds to incidents of absenteeism or misconduct, but more of a support (warning) system. Learners need to know that they matter and are cared for.

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Please note that for the moment the content on the resource pages is available in English only.

Checklist and recommendations for prevention of absenteeism and school drop-out

It is undeniable that medical, psychological, social, educational and legal interventions are required in a number of cases of truancy and early school leaving, but research also shows clearly that in all cases, school and teaching staff can have a decisive influence. This document comprises a checklist for self-assessment of schools, 59 detailed recommendations for improvement of school attendance, pupil engagement and school culture, as well as proposals for behaviour agreements and examples of questionnaires for teachers and parents. The recommended measures are primarily directed at the target group of teachers, principals and parents. The document has been translated from the manual by Nairz-Wirth, Feldmann, Diexer (2012): Handlungsempfehlungen für Lehrende, Schulleitung und Eltern zur erfolgreichen Prävention von Schulabsentismus und Schulabbruch.

Picture: Shutterstock.com

Areas: 1. School governance; 2. Teachers; 3. Support to learners; 4. Parental involvement; 5. Stakeholders involvement

Subareas: 1.1. School culture and climate; 2.3. Initial Teacher Education and Continuing Professional Development of teachers; 3.1. Well-being of learners; 3.3. Career guidance and support; 3.4. Curriculum and learning paths; 3.6. Extended and extra-curricular learning; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk; 4.1. Communication and information; 5.2. Stakeholders' networks

Language: BG; CZ; DA; DE; EL; EN; ES; ET; FI; FR; HR; HU; IT; LT; LV; MT; NL; PL; PT; RO; SK; SL; SV

Country: Austria

Combating drop-out and early school leaving (ESL) in Serbia

UNICEF Serbia and the civil society organisation Centre for Education Policy with the support of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development Republic of Serbia  implemented the project “Combating Early School Leaving in Serbia”.

This project aimed to contribute to decreasing drop-out and early school leaving of children and adolescents through development, establishment, and implementation of the school-based model for early identification of children at risk of dropping out and intervention in situations where dropping-out is taking place.

Combating drop-out and ESL in Serbia has been recognised as a policy priority area.  The Strategy for Education Development in Serbia 2020 (SEDS 2020) calls for the provision of high-quality education for all, an increase of students’ coverage and attainment at all levels of education by maintaining the relevance of education and increasing efficiency. The Strategy implementation is primarily focused on the development of human capital in Serbia, thus underlines importance of the inclusion of pupils from vulnerable and marginalised groups (Roma and children from poor families, children with disabilities and from rural areas etc.).

Areas: 1. School governance; 2. Teachers; 3. Support to learners; 4. Parental involvement

Subareas: 1.1. School culture and climate; 1.2. School planning and monitoring; 2.3. Initial Teacher Education and Continuing Professional Development of teachers; 3.4. Curriculum and learning paths; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk; 3.11. Targeted support - disadvantaged socio-economic background; 5.1. Multidisciplinary teams

Language: EN

Country: Serbia

Criteria for identifying pupils at risk of drop-out and ESL

UNICEF Serbia and the civil society organisation Centre for Education Policy with the support of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development Republic of Serbia  implemented the project “Combating Early School Leaving in Serbia”.

The project aimed to contribute to decreasing drop-out and early school leaving of children and young people. It has defined criteria (predictors) of early school leaving that can be used by school teams in monitoring pupils at risk and preventing drop-out.

Area: 3. Support to learners

Subarea: 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk

Language: BG; CZ; DA; DE; EL; EN; ES; ET; FI; FR; HR; HU; IT; LT; LV; MT; NL; PL; PT; RO; SK; SL; SV

Country: Serbia

CroCoos (Cross-sectoral cooperation focused solutions for the prevention of early school leaving project)

The CroCooS - Prevent dropout! project was developed in the framework of the EC proposal "Implementation of the European strategic objectives in education and training" under the Lifelong Learning Programme to support innovative policy solutions to reduce and prevent early leaving from education and training (ELET). The main aim of the CroCooS project, which was implement between 2014 and 17, was to contribute to the development of an institutional early warning system (EWS) for preventing early leaving from education and training. It also tested its applicability with national pilots focusing on contextual factors affecting the evaluation.
Regional needs addressed included: sensitizing the staff of each school on the need to address the problem of dropout; actively involving teachers in monitoring students and working with them; developing better relationships between students and teachers; strengthening pupils' sense of belonging to the class and the school; developing relationships of trust by being supportive and ensuring a safe school climate.

Areas: 1. School governance; 3. Support to learners

Subareas: 1.2. School planning and monitoring; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk

Language: EN

Country: Hungary; Serbia; Slovenia

Danish Production Schools

The Danish Production schools were created in the 1980s with the aim of combating youth unemployment. Production Schools offer alternative education opportunities to improve labour market integration. The fundamental aim of this type of school is to create a practical learning environment to support young people to complete and earn qualifications in general and vocational upper secondary education and/or maintain a job. The students are offered the opportunity to develop professional, social and personal skills through counselling, participation in practical work experience and production in different workshops ranging from areas such as metalwork, carpentry and textile work in theatre, media and music-based workshops. The focus is on social, personal and physical skills which are complemented by more formal knowledge and skills. Learning processes are organised through workshops and classroom teaching, but every young person is free to organise an individual course where they may challenge themselves and build their confidence.
The most significant challenge for production schools is to prepare and motivate “non-academic” students for the ordinary school system. The last legislative change in 2006focused the aims of Production Schools so that its most important task has been to build a bridge to vocational education and training through relevant practical and academic qualifications. In 2009, there were over 6,000 students in production schools. The student capacity at each school can vary from 20-25 to over 200. Generally speaking the schools are small, with half of the schools accepting fewer than 50 students. Today there are 78 Production Schools in Denmark.

Areas: 1. School governance; 3. Support to learners

Subareas: 1.1. School culture and climate; 3.3. Career guidance and support; 3.4. Curriculum and learning paths; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk; 3.11. Targeted support - disadvantaged socio-economic background

Language: EN

Country: Denmark

Does intensive coaching reduce school dropout?

Research done in the Netherlands has shown that one year of intensive coaching is likely to reduce school dropout by more than 40 percent and yield a net social gain. The target group of students was the general population of students starting in intermediate vocational education. Results suggest that the largest gains are made in the first year of coaching and effects are largest for students with a larger ex-ante probability of school dropout. Examples of coaching are working on study skills (e.g., planning and organizing), counselling in case of personal problems and contact with parents. Both preventive (before study dropout) and curative actions (among study dropouts) of the coaches have been effective and together resulted in a substantial reduction of school dropout.

Picture: Shutterstock.com

Areas: 3. Support to learners; 5. Stakeholders involvement

Subareas: 3.3. Career guidance and support; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk

Language: BG; CZ; DA; DE; EL; EN; ES; ET; FI; FR; HR; HU; IT; LT; LV; MT; NL; PL; PT; RO; SK; SL; SV

Country: Netherlands

ESL - monitoring and prevention solutions (Przedwczesne kończenie nauki - monitoring i przeciwdziałanie)

The project goal is to provide a comprehensive analysis of best practices for preventing ESL in partner countries in the areas: of ESL monitoring systems; and, methods of counteracting ESL and reintegrating students.

Project partners were from Poland, the UK and Italy. Outputs include a report on ESL monitoring systems, a report on prevention and reintegration methods, and a training pack.

Areas: 1. School governance; 2. Teachers; 3. Support to learners

Subareas: 1.1. School culture and climate; 1.3. School management; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk; 3.11. Targeted support - disadvantaged socio-economic background

Language: EN

Country: Italy; Poland; United Kingdom

Essunga Municipality Schools

Essunga, a Swedish municipality, transformed the ranking of its schools from the bottom to the top of the national school league tables between 2007 to the top in 2010. Essunga has three elementary schools and one lower secondary school (grades 6-9). With 5,500 citizens, it is one of the smallest municipalities in the country. The increase in levels of achievement is attributed to a research-based approach of inclusive education. For years, the three elementary schools in Essunga had consistently experienced low educational levels. An increasing number of students were refugees or in “family placements”. In 2007, only 76% of students were eligible for upper secondary school and 20% of these were placed in special education classes. These results compelled political and school leaders and school staff to identify targeted measures to address these challenges. The municipality focused on interventions at school and in the local community to prevent school absence and increase attendance.

Areas: 1. School governance; 2. Teachers; 3. Support to learners

Subareas: 1.1. School culture and climate; 1.3. School management; 2.1. Teacher skills and competences; 3.5. Learning and assessment; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk; 3.10. Targeted support - special educational needs and learning difficulties

Language: EN

Country: Sweden

Guiding cities

Guiding Cities joins policy makers and education stakeholders to map policy and guidance and create coherent policy to respond to the complex needs in the fight against ESL.

The project aimed to:
• Analyse guidance actions in 4 countries through country-based focus groups including stakeholders in education and guidance.
• Develop a Guiding Cities Model and Checklist mapping different possible actions, actors community needs relative to guidance and lifelong learning.
• Establish and manage Working Groups and a survey of best practices (involving at least 40 stakeholders).
• Publish online the GCities Model and links to resources and practices for each type of action and/or each target group. The GCities tools will be available in 6 languages (EN, ES, CAT, IT, EL, RO).
• Test the GCities Model and Checklist-benchmarking tools with at least 40 communities or organisations.
• Improve professional development of local service providers and school guidance practitioners.

Areas: 3. Support to learners; 5. Stakeholders involvement

Subareas: 3.3. Career guidance and support; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk; 5.2. Stakeholders' networks; 5.4. Partnerships: Community organisations and civic society

Language: EN

Country: Greece; Italy; Romania; Spain

IKAN Project

The IKAN project is a project where higher education students of the consortium of Antwerp University and Colleges (AUHA) voluntarily assist Newly Arrived Immigrant (including Refugee) Children with their studies in secondary education. This project aims to respond to the large increase of Newly Arrived Immigrant Children in Flemish education in recent years.

After a maximum of 1 year in reception classes (i.e. OKAN: reception classes for foreign-speaking newcomers), newly arrived immigrant students continue to regular education. This transition is often difficult. Only a small part of the foreign-speaking newcomers who started in OKAN eventually receives a secondary education diploma. With the name IKAN (referring to I Can) the project wants to emphasize that newly arrived immigrant children can have a successful education career, when provided with the right support.

Areas: 3. Support to learners; 5. Stakeholders involvement

Subareas: 3.1. Well-being of learners; 3.6. Extended and extra-curricular learning; 3.7. Monitoring learners at risk; 3.8. Targeted support - Language; 3.9. Targeted support: Migrants, Roma; 3.11. Targeted support - disadvantaged socio-economic background; 5.1. Multidisciplinary teams; 5.2. Stakeholders' networks; 5.4. Partnerships: Community organisations and civic society

Language: EN

Country: Belgium

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