The second LTTA was helt in Evora and Lisbon, Portugal last week. There were 18 participants from all project partner country (Bulgaria, Turkey, Portugal and Italy). The participants presented regional and national policies related to early school leaving and retention of students in educational institutions. This problem exists in all countries and manifests itself differently everywhere, depending on the specifics of the educational system and the social characteristics of each country.
AENIE offered the participants a program, which included school visits in the cities of Vidigueira, Cuba, Beja and Torrao. Portugal schools showed how seek and define policies and methodologies to deal with the problem, which they implement in most cases with the support of the municipalities. This was proved by the visit of the Municipality of Beja (Câmara Municipal de Beja), where the major shared his satisfaction with the effective collaboration with the schools for overcoming the difficulties. To keep students at school, Portuguese schools rely on a modern and innovative teaching environment and extracurricular activities. On the one hand, the technically equipped teaching corps provokes the motivation for study, and on the other hand, the extracurricular activities carried out in a different form, enable each student to develop their hidden talents and to feel valuable and meaningful.
The good experience of the Portuguese schools was shared regarding the education and school retention of students not only from disadvantaged families and ethnic minorities, but also from immigrant children sent by their parents to Europe for a better future. For them, a movie was shown, revealing their fate, which deeply touched all participants in the meeting.