Secondary School of Economics from Slavonski Brod, Croatia, has been implementing an Erasmus+ KA1 project, Teach(ing) for the Future (project number 2017-1-HR01-KA101-034960). The project was funded by EU and approved by The Agency for Mobility and EU Programmes within Erasmus+ program, KA1 – learning mobility of individuals. The project included 10 mobilities (8 teachers, school librarian and the principal). The total value of the project was 19,830 euros. The partner on the project was ShipCon Limassol Ltd. from Cyprus.
Through two main activities (structured courses), the school empowered its teachers and raised the quality level of the teaching process in two fields: entrepreneurship as a cross-curricular subject and teacher training skills of teachers who are mentoring novice teachers. All mobility participants have developed their personal and professional competences, raised the level of quality of their teaching, improved their own position on the labour market through the skills and knowledge gained in the structured courses, while the school has raised its quality and work to an international level, expanded its partnership network and modernized its instruction.
The mobility lasted in the period 2-6 July, 2018 and took place in London, UK. One group of teachers attended the structured course Cultivating Entrepreneurial Mindset in Education, while the other group of teachers attended the structured course Train the Trainer, which helped them gain and develop new teaching skills and methods to be applied in the work with students and novice teaches.
After the mobility, multiple dissemination activities started at the school, county, and regional level. Brochures were created (in Croatian, English and German) with the most important bits of knowledge the teachers acquired while attending both structured courses. Also, the Guide for novice teachers and their mentors was created, as a reference book both for novice teachers and experienced teachers.
Furthermore, using the knowledge gained in the project, workshops were created for teachers to use in the teaching process with students. They are aimed at developing entrepreneurial skills and characteristics in students – creativity, teamwork skills, empathy, negotiation skills and entrepreneurial mindset. The workshops sparked a lot of interest among teachers who did not take part in the mobility, which shows that the transfer of knowledge in dissemination activities was successful. Student feedback shows that they enjoy participating in the workshops and find them useful.
Workshops held at various levels of professional development for teachers ensured the transfer of knowledge. Variety of dissemination activities encouraged the teachers to develop and acquire certain skills: public speaking skills in workshops held for teachers, designing workshops, participating in eTwinning projects initiated after the mobility, partnership in applying for a KA2 project with colleagues from EU countries who also participated in the same structured courses. They modernized the way in which they conduct the teaching process and became open to cooperation with colleagues from European countries. Teachers have, in this way, experienced the numerous benefits of lifelong learning.
This was only one among several projects that Secondary School of Economics has implemented so far. New projects are already being planned and prepared. By empowering the teaching staff the entire educational process in the school is being modernized, which benefits most those who are at the centre of it – the students. Contemporary teaching methods improve the quality of their education, knowledge and skills, which will ultimately result in their better position on the labour market in the future.