Interview for CASEL given by Sara Motta, tutor at Cometa, on the impact of the Covid-19 emergency on learners’ social emotional learning, how to support them and the teachers/trainers.
Inclusive Excellence in VET: the experience of Cometa Formazione
“We need to offer excellence to everyone, to all VET learners […] no one should be left behind. In short, education should be both excellent and inclusive” (Thyssen’s message to EfVET Conference 2018).
In the recent EU policy on VET, the paramount vocation “to leave no one behind” is clearly stated, by promoting a “whole-school approach” in education for sustainable development (EU Council Conclusions, 2010). The Bruges Communiqué (2010) mentions VET role in promoting social cohesion and facing societal challenges, underlining its dual objective: excellence and inclusion. Also the Riga Declarations (2015) claim to “quality and attractiveness of accessible and inclusive VET” by “more flexible and permeable systems”. The EU New Skills Agenda (2016) invites VET to work on “personal fulfilment and development, social inclusion, active citizenship and employment”, in line with the strategy of “a resilient, inclusive and sustainable growth at territorial level” (Communication Strengthening Innovation in Europe’s Regions, 2017).
(Article published on the EfVET Magazine for Professionals – issue March/2020).
Comprehension process and study skills: strategies as the best compensatory tools
Study skills and comprehension process in secondary-level students have been increasingly debated by scholars in the last years, due their crucial role in every learning activity, both for humanistic and scientific subjects, and for students’ performance (Cain & Oakhill, 2006). Learning disabilities urge teachers to pay more attention to didactic practice. Henceforth a stronger focus on how to help students is requested, in particular concerning the acquisition of strategies: the construction of scheme or concept maps, among other aspects, leads to a semantic knowledge and makes the retrieve of information easier. Low achievement is generally associated with poor knowledge and the use of strategies is necessary for the activation of compensatory processes in students with learning disabilities or learning difficulties. To this extent, the research aims at pointing out: the type of relation between study skills and the process of comprehension; the use of strategies and their role during the process of study; the performance of students with learning disabilities, compared with classmates.
(Co-authors: Cristina Ciociola, Beatrice Baragiola and Jennifer Biasolo, for the ECER Conference 2019. Research funded by Fondazione Deloitte. For the full paper, please contact Cometa Research)
VET For Inclusion And Identity Development: The Cometa Approach With Young Migrants
Cometa, located in Como, Italy, provides services to minors and young adults and is serving an increasing number of migrants. These young migrants are vulnerable due to their marginalization in areas such as language, cultural differences, and class status, and they face potential risks in not being able to find meaningful employment. This research proposal reports on findings from a qualitative study whose main objective was to examine students’ (who are migrants) and staff members’ growth and development through their involvement in a one-year long training course entitled the “Minimaster”. The Minimaster’s success relies on (1) a mix of training on professional subjects, e.g., enology, labour law, and Italian and English language literacy; (2) socio-emotional learning, e.g., communication skills, relationship building with local entrepreneurs; and (3) a combination of didactic methodology, e.g., strong work-based approach, as well as daily coaching and mentoring.
(Co-authors: Paolo Nardi and Terry L. Koenig, University of Kansas, for the ECER Conference 2019)
Inclusive Excellence in VET: towards Lifelong Employability
Inclusive Excellence is the distinctive element in Cometa learning approach, with highly positive results in terms of students job placement and personal development. These results have been recently awarded by UNESCO-UNEVOC which included Cometa in its international network. The official announcement, at the presence of the President of Lombardia, has been the trigger for an international conference on the future of VET organized by Cometa, EfVET, UNESCO-UNEVOC and VETNET (European network of researchers in VET).