Archive of European Projects

EU Specific Learning Disabilities (Sp.L.D.) Policy and Roadmap and Sp.L.D. Teacher & Adult Learner Training
Start date: 01 Sep 2014, End date: 31 Aug 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The Project follows on from a Grundtvig Project completed in 2013 (Specific Learning Disabilities [Sp.L.D.] Roadmap for teacher and adult learner training) which established that Sp.L.D. consists of 7 learning disabilities, co-existing to varying degrees which, due to the same underlying information processing deficiencies, will require similar pedagogical approaches. In the majority of EU nations, co-existence of such disabilities is neither accepted nor diagnosed. Therefore, there is little or no training for adults, teachers nor support for children/students. Unidentified, Sp.L.D. results in low self esteem, high stress, atypical behaviour, mental health problems, low achievement and early school leaving. This can also lead to violence in school and later anti-social behaviour within communities. In the worst case it can lead to criminal acts and imprisonment. The reverse is also true where children and young persons, having had on-going support for their Sp.L.D., go on to higher education and become valuable citizens. Using Eurostat population data, in 2010 there were between 17 to 46 Million persons, between the ages of 3 to 25, in the EU-27 with Sp.L.D. For such numbers to remain unidentified and, as a consequence unsupported, is a massive lost generation that the EU cannot afford to lose in today’s global market. For the first time, and as one of the first Erasmus Plus Projects, Europe can take the next critical and essential steps to produce an EU Sp.L.D. Policy and Roadmap and create an effective and consistent European Sp.L.D. Adult Learner & Teacher e-Training Programme which would finally address the major problems with unidentified and, as a consequence, unsupported Sp.L.D. There are 9 EU Partners from the Estonia (Tallin University); Germany (Institut fuer systemisch-integrative Lerntherapie, Leipzig); Greece (Hellenic Dyslexia Association); Italy (Istituto d'Istruzione Superiore "F.S. Nitti"); Poland (Stowarzyszenie Przyjaciół i Wychowanków Zespołu Szkół); Romania (Tibiscus University from Timisoara, Faculty of Psychology); Slovenia (University of Ljubljana) ; Turkey (Egitim Uretim ve Sanat Dernegi) and United Kingdom (Lancashire Centre for Specific Learning Difficulties) In the area of Sp.L.D., the 3 year project will: - Determine National Policies, understanding and defnitions and their co-existence at Academic Institute and Schools levels - Develop dissemination Information documents/e-documents - Determine potential 'socio/political' barriers to their acceptance and co-existence, including National inclusive education and legal frameworks - Determine National pedagogical and teacher/adult learner training approaches including both academic/theoretical and practical training - Produce an EU Sp.L.D. Policy, Definitions and Teacher/Adult Learner Training Policy Document - Disseminate a recommended EU Sp.L.D. Policy and Roadmap to the ET2020 Committee - Develop & Evaluate Sp.L.D. Teacher & Adult Learner Training Courses - Develop Sp.L.D. e-training platform - Implement Sp.L.D. e-training Courses - Two Conferences: 1. Dissemninate EU Sp.L.D. Policy, Definitions and Teacher/Adult Learner Training Policy Document; 2. Disseminate EU Sp.L.D. Policy and Sp.L.D. Interactive e-Training Courses. In particular, whereas Specific Learning Disabilities (Sp.L.D.) have been, in the main, undiagnosed and therefore unsupported throughout Europe, the Project will facilitate a quantuum leap in knowledge of how Sp.L.D. has detrimentally affected the past, current and future generations of students and adults throughout Europe. Moreover, the detailed and different levels of Sp.L.D. Teacher Training created will enable all participants, participating organisations, target groups and relevent stakeholders to both identify Sp.L.D. and support students and adults with Sp.L.D. in both schools, tertiary education and related NGOs. It is clearly recognised that although the EU cannot force its member nations to implement its recommended Sp.L.D. policy changes, the socio-political impact awareness that this project will generate at regional, national and European levels will be such that they will not be able to retain the status-quo of permitting unidentified and unsupported Sp.L.D. Moroever, even if only a minority of member nations accept and implement the project recommendations, countless numbers of EU citizens will have their lives changed for the positive - transformed from their perspective of feeling rejected and useless to having their true potential as valuable citizens realised. This reaches into to the very heart of vision of ET2020. It is very important to note that the valorisation impact such a development of e-training could have using Open edX - it is highly likely that this will be one of the first developments in the EU and, as such, its impact across the whole of the EU for e-Training cannot be overestimated.
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