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Education

Alejandra Ferrer and Francina Armengol lay first stone of new school and “escoleta” in Sant Ferran

foto-primera-pedra-1-Formentera president Alejandra Ferrer and Balearic first minister Francina Armengol were joined today at noon by local and regional education chiefs Martí March and Susana Labrador, respectively, at a ceremony inaugurating construction of the new primary school and early-learning escoleta.

Also on hand for the gathering were Pilar Costa, who heads Ms Armengol’s office, provincial councillor Sílvia Tur, local vice-presidents Ana Juan and Rafael Ramírez and the Pine Islands’ envoy on education, Margalida Ferrer. Members of the school administration and the association of parents (Apima) attended too, along with representatives of various other authorities.

President Ferrer called it “an important day, because the project set in motion today —construction of two educational centres— is one islanders have clamoured for for years”. “Plus, the one-storey buildings blend in with their surroundings: they’re tailored to Formentera and learning needs here on the island.”

For her part, Armengol touted collaboration between the Consell de Formentera and Govern balear, insisting “it’s what’s behind the best ideas, like for infrastructure such as this, which ticks all the boxes for a better learning environment for our children”.

Councillor Labrador applauded the symbolism inherent in placement of the foundation stone. “It hasn’t been easy making it this far, but we can finally say with certainty that the end is in sight”, she said, applauding the local educational community for “keeping their eyes on the prize all these years” and directing a special nod at the school administration and Apima for their patience.

Armengol, Ferrer, March and Labrador signed written record of the ceremony and oversaw insertion in the building’s foundation of a time capsule — a metal urn containing coins and locally-printed newspapers of the day.

Infrastructure to accommodate 450 children at primary school and 74 at nursery

Plans were drafted by Ibisec and, in the case of the school, include two classrooms for each year level — that is, six groups for what is known in Spain as “infant education” (for children aged three to six) and twelve for primary education (ages six to twelve), accommodating a grand total of 450 pupils. The schools will occupy a 11,037-sq.-m. plot outside Sant Ferran that sits adjacent to the future municipal escoleta, which will also accommodate two groups per level (i.e., 74 children aged zero to three spread across six groups).

Money for the €5.8-million primary school will come from the Balearic ministry of education and universities, while the bill for the nursery, which tops €1.1 million, will be picked up by the Formentera government. Ibisec oversees both the project’s tender and execution of works, which must be completed in 14 months. Crews began work in August, and Mr March asserted that work would be finished within the year. “Children will finish the 2020-21 year in this school”, he said.

Tecopsa Hermanos Parrot is a temporary consortium of firms that will carry out the €6.7-million construction plans.

The Govern balear has requested support from the European Regional Development Fund’s 2014-2020 operational programme.

20 February 2020
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Formentera Day Centre begins Dance Therapy

curs-dansa-tera--pia-foto-cent1Attendees of the adult care centre took part in a course on dance therapy today, marking the start of individually-tuned weekly sessions geared towards helping each of the course’s 36 participants—some seniors, some people with disabilities—no matter their particular level of functioning.

Sessions will be led by teachers from the School of Music and Dance, though a physiotherapist from the Formentera Day Centre will also be on hand helping participants to improve mobility and shaping an enriched sensorial environment using, among other things, music. Sessions last for one hour, and individuals with disabilities will meet on Thursdays, while the seniors’ group meets Fridays.

With a more complete roll-out under way following the success of a trial-run in May and June, the course has been incorporated into curriculum and will continue until July. The course happens thanks to the joint efforts of the School of Music and Dance and Day Centre, both of which operate under the umbrella of the Consell de Formentera.

16 January 2020
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Music school celebrates Saint Cecilia

escola-83The education office of the Consell de Formentera reports that on Friday 22 November the island's Escola de Música i Dansa (School of Music and Dance) will stage a concert to celebrate the patroness of musicians. The concert is scheduled for 8.00pm in the Sant Francesc church and is part of the activities programme to celebrate twenty years of learning at the Escola.

The activities continue at 8.00pm on 1 December, when students take part in a benefit gala held at the Sala de Cultura-Cinema by the Eivissa-Formentera Association of Individuals with Special Needs (Apneef). A Christmas concert is in the works for 13 December at 6.00pm in the Sant Ferran square, and will feature local school children and the Escola band.

As education consellera Susana Labrador pointed out, “the principal aim of this school is to put islanders of all ages in contact with music. Maybe that means teaching fans of homegrown musical heritage how to play traditional instruments; maybe it means classes in modern dance or folk guitar, and a focus on the new”.

Activities in 2020
The Escola has already begun lining up activities for the year ahead as well, like the fourth Cantada Pagesa on the evening of 22 February at the Sala de Cultura-Cinema, an intergenerational gathering of local vocalists. For Carnival, on 26 February, students of the Escola will put on a festival at the Sala de Cultura-Cinema, offering performances of music and dance. For International Dance Day, a dance festival will be held on 29 April with support from the Casal de Joves.

Also in the offing are an intimate concert at La Mola lighthouse and a piano recital at the Casa del Poble (both dates are to be announced). A permanent display of photographs of performances by students at the music school is also being prepared, and will be exhibited in the hallways of the Escola.


19 November 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

2020 calendar centres on etymological roots of Formentera’s coastal islands

foto-calendari-oac-2020-portad1Reviving a yearly tradition, Formentera’s Language Assessment Service has put out a new crop of calendars for the year ahead.

The 2020 calendar spotlights eleven islands on the Formentera coastline; a summit between Punta de l’Anguila and Racó de s’Alga; and Es Freus, and includes the image and etymological origin of names like S’Espardell, S’Espardelló, S’Espalmador,  Castaví, En Forn, Ses Parreres and Es Fonoll Marí, to name a few.

Past editions of the calendars have focused on varieties of fig, raisin, fishing tackle and Formentera’s history as told by its archaeological sites.

The 2020 calendar aims to showcase local toponymy—namely, that of Formentera’s coastal waters. Photos were taken by Alfredo Montero, and the two thousand copies that have been printed are available at Consell de Formentera offices like the Citizen’s Information Office (OAC), Antoni Blanc sport centre, the culture office in Sant Ferran and the Casa del Poble in La Mola.


23 December 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Two Formentera pupils snag prizes for work on water cycle

entrega-premis-aqualia1Two pupils from local primary schools —CEIP Sant Ferran de ses Salines's Pablo Wenham Martínez and Ana Burches, of CEIP Mestre Lluís Andreu— have been named finalists in seventeenth Concurs Digital Infantil (Digital Kids Contest). The contest is put on by Aqualia, which implements Formentera's municipal water service. The two children’s drawings were picked from a pool of over 7,200 submissions from Spanish cities where Aqualia provides service. All told, 250 children were celebrated for their work.

Alejandra Ferrer and Susana Labrador, Formentera's president and culture conseller, respectively, were joined by the head of Aqualia's operations on the island, Maria del Mar Yern, in applauding the pair’s achievement and presenting each artist with a smartwatch. President Ferrer saluted Aqualia for its initiative and said local schools deserved praise too for taking part in the contest, which works to educate children about the importance of a resource which, according to the president, "is as scarce as it is vital".

Organisers say the competition’s overlap with World Water Day is no accident, and describe the idea behind the competition as “getting kids thinking about managing the water cycle responsibly, and about the hard work that goes into bringing it into people's homes, not to mention cycling it back out in a way that’s sustainable”.

The year three and four pupils who took part in this year's contest learned the ropes as researchers, pinpointing the source of the water we consume every day, then figuring out where it goes when we've finished using it. To that end, a website called "Water Investigators" (www.investigatorsdelaigua.cat) offered children vast educational materials about managing the whole water cycle, including a special section on the Sustainable Development Goals and Aqualia's commitment to the 2030 Agenda.


13 November 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

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