"Initiative for innovative concepts to prevent early school leaving"


European Commission - SOCRATES, Leonardo & Youth Programmes

Joint Actions - Reference: 119487-JA-1-2004-1-DE-JOINT CALL-ACYP






Education is the key for a successful integration since it gives young people the chance to integrate into the labour market and society in general. The prevention of early school leaving is a common European problem that all countries are facing. This implies that solutions should be European.

Plenty of best practice examples already exist, but still many teachers face difficulties in addressing the additional educational needs of their less-favoured students. Only a small percentage of schools, vocational training sites and youth centres is cooperating with local partners specialised in integrating those young less-favoured ones. Furthermore, good practice are often not easily transferable from one school to the other and from one country to another.

Anyway the prevention of drop outs is a task which not only concerns schools but all the players in their environment. Schools have to become community schools and reach out to institutions and associations (e.g. teacher associations, parent associations, youth services, immigrant associations, etc.) to work with them.

 This project aims to

Ø        encourage the interest of young people in learning and to become active citizens in their community;

Ø        prevent early school leaving;

Ø        make schools and training sites more attractive by involving the students into active citizenship projects and by providing the teachers with hands-on material;

Ø        identify good practise in Germany, Italy, Netherlands and Spain and to promote it widely;

Ø        make the results transferable to teachers, educators, networks and opinion leaders in all EU countries and to help these concepts to become mainstream.

Ø        Encourage additional key players to become active using the examples as a basis to develop additional learning approaches;

Ø        Offer a direct way of communication and exchange of ideas through the website.



The main activities of the project, planned for two years, will be targeted at 13-18 year-olds coming from less privileged backgrounds as well as their teachers, educators, parents, ministries and opinion leaders.

The project will focus on secondary schools, youth centres and vocational training sites - especially those in focal points and areas with high numbers of less-favoured families - in Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain. The project approach to the problems is to involve the young people in learning process itself in order to make them fully active citizens.

''INNOschool'' launches a cross-national initiative, collecting innovative best practice examples in the participating countries. The adaptation of the existing networks and the development of new networks as well as new learning approaches that actively involve the youngsters will be encouraged. A jury of experts in each country will select the national winners, an international jury will choose between them the 12 best projects which will then be financially awarded. The best practice examples should

Ø        be projects that do not require huge budgets thus can motivate other colleagues to copy them

Ø        actively involve the students

Ø        involve different partners (e.g. youth centres, parents, other family)

Ø        be part of curricular or non-curricular activities.

The results of ''INNOschool'' will be worked over by the experts, made transferable to other EU countries and be published on the Internet. Multipliers in all European countries are going to be informed of the results of the competition.



§          a teacher’s newspaper that will be mailed to 28.000 schools in the participating countries to inform teachers and pupils about the project. The newspaper will be in four issues (German, Spanish, Dutch, Italian), with shared articles (include general and country related information) plus resources that are different for each country, work sheets for the students, a poster and a questionnaire (for evaluation). The newspapers will be sent on Sept./ October 2005 to teachers of Germany (“Hauptschulen”), Netherlands (pre-vocational schools), Spain and Italy (beginning of the secondary schools). The newspaper will include information on the problem of school drop out and already provide first case studies on and ideas for projects that prevent dropouts. The goal of the newspaper is twosome: to inform and sensitise a large audience about the problem and to invite as many players in the field to send in descriptions of projects that they are already implementing to fight drop out rates. Players with innovative ideas will be motivated to start projects. The best ideas and projects are awarded with financial grants.

Ø       an online version of the newspaper in order to reach out to an even wider audience,

Ø       website in 5 languages (the languages of the partners + English) in which it will be published the documentation of the competition and description of the awarded projects. The website will remain available after the end of the project.



The project is undertaken as a multinational partnership including institutions from 4 European countries: Germany, Netherlands, Italy and Spain:

Ø        Zeitbild Verlag – Berlin, Germany – a publishing Group for Education and Communication with close contact with 40.000 schools in Germany and with a website visited monthly by 12.000 teachers and opinion leaders in the educational sector

Ø        Centrum Voor Innovatie Van Opleidingen – CINOP - 's-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands – a member of various national and international networks in the field of Education and Training, has close connections with Dutch institutes like KPCgroep and The Dutch Institute for primary and secondary education. Also CINOP hosts the National Agency for Leonardo da Vinci Programme and leads the national consortium of the Euroguidance Network and carries out the European Study Visit programme from CEDEFOP.

Ø        I.E.S. Ribeira do Louro Spain – A superior education Institute, experienced in education, training and teaching methodology)

Ø       Federazione Nazionale Insegnanti Centro di iniziativa per l’Europa – FENICENaples, Italy – a non-profit teacher’s association who support all those initiatives which favour the integration of the intellectual resources of schools in the cultural growth of society, promote and plan initiatives, training projects, refresher courses, the cultural improvement of  teachers as well as research and experimentation in the teaching field, and take part in research and development of technologies aiming at making learning easier, education and vocational training more easily available thanks to the modern means of communication.