Forum for Freedom in Education
Bartol Kašić High School, Grubišno Polje
Konjščina High School
Industrial and Crafts High School, Sisak
Pula Grammar School, Pula Vukovar Grammar School, Vukovar Marko Marulić Grammar School, Split Transportation and Technical High School, Dubrovnik
In today’s world, we like to think that education is the only passport to a better future, but Croatian students seem to disagree: “Grades and integrity do not matter as much as having friends and family in the right places”, this is their idea on climbing the social ladder. Through teacher and principal training, school and local community projects, and intensive dissemination activities this project aim to empower youth for ethical decision making through the educational system.
Underdeveloped area:Konjščina, Grubišno Polje, Sisak, Vukovar; Cities:Dubrovnik, Pula, Split Croatia
Croatian schools are often reluctant to address academic dishonesty which shows that they are not well equipped for the promotion of academic integrity and civic engagement. More than 43% of high schoolers perceive different kinds of cheating on the exams as acceptable. Students also find it easy to find someone who will allow them to copy their work, this shows that breaking the idea of unethical behavior as ‘helping’ has to happen. If these issues are properly addressed, students will seek justice and change. Both of which are needed given that corruption is deeply rooted in Croatian society where corrupt actions know no regional demarcations. If we overlook this problem, the prevalence of corruption will only prompt cheating among students.
We believe that school should be organized to help students in the process of upholding all positive individual potentials and the teachers should take care of their pedagogical competencies aiming to create moral patterns for students in the classroom and to lead activities outside the classroom, where these values would come to life. We want to educate and empower 19 principals, 21 teachers, and at least 50 students with key competencies in academic integrity, with emphasis on enhanced cooperation with the local community.
(1.1.)Each partner school will nominate a project team of three teachers for whom the two-day teacher training seminar will be held on anti-corruption education, academic integrity, and honesty. (1.2.)The principles of the same seven partner schools joined with 12 principles of other schools selected on the public call for participation will attend the training on school code of conduct development. (1.3.)After training, school teams and principals will attend four webinars on plagiarism, and good school practice on this topic from the US, the UK, and the EU schools. (2.1.)School teams together with their students will develop and implement school projects on academic integrity and honesty during the second term of the 2021/22 school year. School projects should address the topic of academic integrity and honesty and shall need to reach out to the local community. The project lead will assist the school in the development of their projects. School teams will have a budget of 100,00 EUR for their materials costs. (3.1.)Alongside school project implementation, the call for good practices on teaching academic integrity from other schools will be published. (3.2.)Virtual Civic Education Day will be an opportunity to present the school projects [2.1.] and good practices [3.1.] which will be also published in an online publication (3.3.)and presented in a series of podcasts(3.4.).
Seven schools will have three teachers empowered for teaching about academic integrity and honesty but also equipped with the know-how to include this topic in the school curriculum. Twenty schools will have principals ready to plan, develop and implement a code of conduct following the best practices in this field. At least 50 students will be empowered with key competencies in academic integrity and will reach out to their communities. Civic Education Day, good practices publication, and podcasts will be at disposal to other teachers and principals to encourage them to work with young people and local communities in raising awareness on the importance of academic integrity and honesty.
The project will raise awareness among principals and teachers on the power schools have in transforming society. They will become the catalysts of change within their schools and help grow the network of active citizens through their projects on academic integrity. The role of students is to be co-creators and implementers of school projects from the very beginning, in which they will learn the importance of academic integrity as well as how to transform their knowledge into action. In this way, the project will also reduce the passivity of young people that is present in society. Thus, not only will people be empowered to speak up on injustice and call for much-needed change in society but they will be the change that they seek.
Since 2010, the FFE has been active in promoting academic integrity as well as anti-corruption education. The FFE has a portfolio of projects, training, and materials in this field. Mario Bajkuša, sociologist, has more than 10 years of experience in this field. He is leading a school democratization program with an emphasis on civic education. He will be joined by Maja Šarić, political scientist and assistant in the program. Ivana Lacko will be in charge of administration. She is an expert in finances with more than 10 years of experience. Implementation of this project contributes to our vision of a democratic school and builds on our previous projects. Our motivation emerges from our cooperation with schools and teachers who express the need for this kind of activity.
Funding requested from Civic Europe
ACCOMMODATION: 8.116,40 €
HONORARIUM: 4.232,80 €
HUMAN RESOURCES: 17.427,72 €
OTHER: 1.952,38 €
TRAVEL: 2.433,86 €
Have you ever thought about how copy-pasting homework, school work, and exam cheating is taken for granted on some school levels? How was your personal experience and what were the mechanisms to enhance academic integrity? In everyday life, can you detect the consequences of these behaviors?