static image

Month: April 2023

Summer Teacher Training in Amsterdam

We are happy to announce our open summer courses that will be held in Amsterdam. The courses will be about inclusion, being entrepreneurial as a teacher and engaging parents you find hard to reach. They are 5-day courses, Monday to Friday, with the Saturday offering a touristic programme with a training twist. All our courses are eligible for Erasmus+ mobility funding if you school has a budget available. Participation fee (including all training material and costs of the Day 6 programme, but excluding accommodation and meals) is EUR 560.

Collaborating with parents you find hard to reach

Dates: 26 June – 1 July

The training on working with parents is based on two important pillars: self-awareness elements and helping teachers to understand parents – especially parents who are difficult for teachers to reach. The remainder of the training will present methods and tools to bridge the gap that often exists between parents and teachers, because initiating and facilitating this process is an important professional task of the teacher. Scientific research has shown that cooperation between parents and teachers has a significant positive impact on children’s academic performance as well as behaviour at school. Knowledge of students’ family backgrounds is essential for teachers in their work as educators, and a strong, cohesive community of parents can be the most important ally of teachers.

Inclusion in pre-school and lower primary school

Dates: 10-15 July

During the training, participants will use the MultInclude tools developed with Erasmus+ funds to assess the inclusiveness of their own school, their everyday work and then set their own strategic goals. They will then learn about methods and tools – partly based on each other’s experiences – that will help them to teach as inclusively as possible within the existing constraints (class sizes, lack of teaching assistants and expert support). The training will cover student-centred teaching methods, the involvement of parents and the local community, and students’ own initiatives.

Entrepreneurial teaching

Dates: 21-26 August

The skills that characterise entrepreneurs – creativity, flexibility, critical thinking, planning, etc. – are becoming increasingly important in school, too. The training programme, designed specifically for professional educators, will enable participants to develop themselves in these areas while providing them with tools and ideas that they can apply in their daily work to help their students develop in these areas in the classroom.

For more information send an e-mail to [email protected]

Long-term collaboration with VMU

Parents International and Vytautas Magnus University have signed a Memorandum of Understandig for cooperation in the preparation and improvement of study programmes, lectures, organization of students’ internships, preparation and implementation of joint projects. There has been a collaboration between the two institutions for a few years now, but we have formalised the relationship and made it long-term rather than occassional with this act.

The collaboration is with their Education Academy that is specialized in preparing school teachers and other educators.

Pedagogical studies at VDU Education Academy – a new approach to the preparation of teachers. The generation of tomorrow’s educators is being grown here by combining solid interdisciplinary and objective knowledge, most efficient educational experiences and deeply rooted traditions as well as by fostering humanistic Artes liberales spirit.

While preparing teachers, the attention is paid not only on excessive knowledge of a subject, but also on a comprehensive education and self-realization of every student. Possibilities to acquire knowledge in various fields, to study foreign languages, to develop one’s creativity as well as  skills of entrepreneurship and IT field gained in practical laboratories are the conditions that are of crucial importance for the development of a liberal personality that are able to adapt to the rapidly changing world. The aim of VDU Education Academy is to create such an environment that will help bringing  up a broad-minded, brilliant XXIst century teacher, who is not afraid of any challenges.

Exclusive, different studies at VDU Education Academy will allow a student to become a motivated and creative personality.

The above mentioned educational principles are based on the examples of the lecturers who teach at the Academy and are leaders not only in the field of education but also in public, the professionals of their fields – scientists, writers, sportsmen, artists.

The aims of today and tomorrow’s education are being achieved by joining the forces of academicians, students, the whole education community and the part of society that holds education as a one of the most crucial elements of the country. All together, not afraid of challenges, we are building the Lithuania of the future.

The collaboration is already ongoing in the form of teaching and training their students, developing a new study programme that provides for new legislative training requirements and joint project applications.

Collaboration on Research with Brookings

The Center for Universal of Education at Brookings has developed and is piloting a set of conversation starter tools. It is a follow-up to the work done on the Playbook for Family-School Engagement that we were providing inspiration for and our Director contributed to it as a reviewer. During the summer and autumn of 2023, our researchers are piloting the tools in Hungary, Kazakhstan and the Netherlands.

The Conversation Starter Tools (CSTs) are a set of tools developed by CUE to guide school, jurisdiction, or community teams in facilitating data-informed conversations where they can talk about their beliefs on education and build relational trust. The Conversation Starter Tools guide teams in identifying educators’, parents’, and students’ beliefs on the purpose of school and what makes a quality education; valued pedagogical approaches; and level of trust, alignment, and engagement. The surveys data can vary depending on demographics, such as by gender and education levels of parents. These surveys do not judge or assess schools, but rather help teams understand beliefs and experiences to help inform more participatory and inclusive approaches to promoting family engagement.

For teams wanting to facilitate data-informed conversations, the process can be summarized in 4 steps:

  1. Contextualize: This step involves determining why teams want to conduct surveys (purpose), who the respondents are (demographics + literacy levels), how the surveys will be administered (remote, in-person, hybrid), what needs to be modified for context (especially ensuring the surveys are translated into relevant languages), and whether findings will be used for research purposes.
  2. Survey: Surveys are administered to parents, teachers, and students (for use with students over 14 years) either in-person or remotely. Data is analyzed and visualized.
  3. Share data & discuss: Teams share findings from the surveys with respondent groups. Conversations are then organized among various actors to discuss the findings of the survey and their reflections and takeaways.
  4. Strategize: Conversations are used to guide teams in building strategies to increase family engagement in their communities.

The current research is testing how the tools work in different schools and school systems and also how to translate various notions to local languages for better understanding. You can find the American version here:

We will share our research outcomes with you towards the end of the year.