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Mentoring scheme for schools: mainstreaming innovation by spreading the advanced ICT-based teaching practices to a wide circle of schools


the action will build, coordinate and seek to expand an inclusive pan-European network of schools where schools (school leaders and teachers) interested in pedagogical uses of ICT can build their know-how by learning from their more advanced peers through demonstrations of best pedagogically sound practice. The action will in particular focus on mainstreaming the innovation process, which leads to positive results, using a policy-connected approach by involving policy-makers at regional and national level. The action will also include bottom-up, regional grassroots actions that support the situated take up of ICT and ICT-based practices between schools with various levels of technological proficiency, particularly within countries where mainstreaming of innovative use of ICT in schools is still at a relatively low level and paying attention to contexts where such patterns of cooperation are not yet prevalent. The action will particularly: 1) collect and document evidence of cases where whole-school peer-learning methodologies have been successfully used in the Member States, and the associated ones, with a view to further scaling-up, and also compare them with less successful cases 2) build on and involve the existing networks, ‘multiplier’ structures and regional hubs to mainstream change; 3) set up collaboration between more advanced and less advanced schools and support the exchange or practice with instructional design, paying attention to their specific educational contexts; 4) leverage an EU-level awareness-raising platform or infrastructure to promote the idea and models of mentoring scheme; actions may propose using existing platforms to save resources for other activities 5) explore which incentives and rewards for advanced schools make it attractive for them to participate as mentors in school clusters to mainstream their innovative practices 6) will support the development of whole-school approaches to ICT deployment and the mainstreaming of innovative practice involving ICT in schools across Europe 7) provide a strategy and a plan how to achieve greatest impact possibly by involving institutional actors such as Ministries of Education and disseminate the model of mentoring among schools.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU in the order of EUR 1 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Education, in particular at school level, has to keep the pace with the digital transformation of our society. While some schools have a culture of well-developed ICT strategies and pursue very innovative practices, they often work in isolation and there is a growing digital gap between schools that are advanced and those who are not leveraging the advantages of ICT-based pedagogies. The greatest challenge is to mainstream digital innovation in education that contributes to improve educational performance and school climate, reaching the less advanced schools and teachers. To accelerate the digital transformation of schools in Europe, there is a need for sharing, discussing, spreading and adopting innovative practices, supporting a whole-school approach and promoting a model of school mentoring. This requires implanting and fostering a broader culture of innovation and leveraging networks and hubs of innovation to help disseminate and widely diffuse best practice involving ICT. Accelerating digital transformation in education and delivering high-quality digital education to all students requires bridging this gap and accelerating change by diffusing innovative ICT-based educational practices across schools and stimulating bottom-up diffusion of innovation through school-to-school peer-learning.

The proposals should provide meaningful and ambitious indicators on how the whole requested range of impacts will be measured, including the improvements resulting from the digital innovation actions, as well as the number of countries and schools to be reached.

A significant number of schools connected and supported by the network to exchange best practices and develop a whole-school approach involving all levels of school governance to implementing ICT and a significant number of policy-makers and educational stakeholders provided with actionable guidance on how to successfully mainstream a culture of innovation across European schools