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Education

Formentera hands out eight grants for higher ed

Atencio OACThe Formentera Council's office of education will give eight grants to students of higher education programmes in 2015-2016. Education councillor Susana Labrador announced the Council's plan to distribute 10,000 euros in 1,250-euro grants to students of higher learning programmes (universities, fine arts, technical studies, plastic arts, design and sports studies) provided applicants are also residents of Formentera.

To be valid, an applicant's course of study must be officially recognised in all of Spain. Grants will be given to students in classroom-based (not online or distance-learning) programmes. Studies must also take place at state schools, unless a candidate's course of study is only offered in a private school.

As the councillor pointed out, 2015-2016 grant-giving by the CiF is up compared to last year, “when only seven were awarded”. She also reminded potential applicants that the terms of application and information about all required documentation (which must be submitted at the Citizens Information Office [OAC]) is available online: http://www.consellinsulardeformentera.cat/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&id=351&Itemid=437&lang=ca. The deadline for applications is 25 April.

Council earmarks €93,000 for student grants

Foto RP ajudes estudiantsEarlier today, the Formentera Council office of education launched a call for student aid and grant applications for the 2015-2016 school year. Department head Susana Labrador announced the Council's intention to build on their past momentum “by raising aid 6% compared to last year”. Labrador indicated the aid is aimed at “making textbooks more affordable for schools and students” and said the additional funding will go to “increased funding for travel costs and higher learning scholarships”.

Grant money for higher education

“The Council will provide €10,000 in €1,250 scholarships to Formentera residents in higher learning courses (university, fine arts, technical studies, professional fine arts, design, sports studies)”, Aguilera reported. Programmes of study must be degree-track and officially-recognised in all of Spain. Study grants will only be awarded to students of public, attendance-based programmes. Private schools will only be considered if the studies in question are not offered by any public establishment.

Travel aid

Aguilera also reported on a call for applicants for travel cost reimbursements, “open to students of higher learning, technical training programmes, postsecondary formal education and art programmes not conducted on the island of Formentera”. The Council will dedicate €38,000 for that kind of aid, split into chunks of €150 for students in Eivissa or in distance learning programmes and €450 euros for students who study away from the Pitiüsa islands.

Assistance for textbooks

Moreover, the administration will give €45,000 in assistance for textbook purchases. Councillor Aguilera said the money would be funneled toward two different areas—additions to reused textbook stocks in primary and secondary learning, and textbook purchases for individuals registered as residents on the island and enrolled in early childhood education in 2015-16.

More information

Notes on eligibility and required documentation is available at the Citizen's Information Office (OAC) at http://www.consellinsulardeformentera.cat/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&id=351&Itemid=437&lang=ca

Application deadline 25 April

For more information, all those interested can visit the department of culture, education and heritage of the Formentera Council. The deadline for application submissions is 25 April. As encouragement to potential applicants, Councillor Labrador noted that “last year, the Council handed out 90 travel grants, 7 higher learning grants and 45 textbook aid packages”. 

Textbook reuse programmes and future teachers get 42,000€ in assistance

The office of education of the Formentera Council (CiF) has announced the assistance package it will provide, retroactively, for the textbook reuse programme for the 2014-2015 school year. The Council's funding for the programme —  42,000 euros all told — will go toward the acquisition of textbooks used in primary and secondary schools as well as individual aid packages for future teachers in early-childhood education programmes during the 2014-2015 school year.

Education councillor Susana Labrador explained the allocation delay was the result of updates to the regulatory process — changes agreed upon by the Council and island schools. As for 2015-2016 financial assistance, Councillor Labrador indicated it would come during the current school year, as is customary. She said the programme was about «solidarity» and commented, «the goal of the aid is to promote a co-operative approach to reusing textbooks, not to mention provide assistance to families with heavy financial burdens and already stretched resources».

Multi-child and single-parent families
The current aid will go to the primary and secondary schools of Formentera that have a textbook reuse programme, as well as any students of early-childhood teaching programmes or pupils belonging to multi-child or single-parent families and attending primary or secondary school.

Application period ends 10 December
Local schools will receive 70 euros for each primary school pupil and 90 euros per pupil in secondary. Likewise, for students of early-learning teaching programmes, the Council will pay up to 50% of education costs, or up to 100% if they are a member of a multi-child or single-parent family. Interested applicants should visit the Citizens' Information Office (OAC) before 10 December. Applications will be reviewed and judged competitively.

«School for parents: a common ground for education»

Escola de pares premsaEarlier today the Formentera Council's office of education unveiled its programme Escola de pares i mares (School for parents: a common ground for education). In a presentation before members of the press, department head Susana Labrador explained the details of the programme, to be based around five informational talks offered to parents and teachers from Wednesday 24 February to Monday 18 April.

«This school for parents picks up where the ones in 2012 and 2014 left off», pointed out Councillor Labrador, «and adds something new entirely: the creation of a learning space shared by families and teachers». The goal is to create an «educational common ground», which explains the partnership between the CiF office of education, the Formentera parents association (FAPA) and the island's resource centre for teachers, the CEP. Organisers see the school as a forum for families, teachers and student representatives to talk about their concerns. Says Labrador, the inclusion of teachers in the talks was important for everyone.

Also at the presentation were Rosa Martí, director of the CEP in Formentera, and Francesca Faccioli and Sonia Ramos, two representatives of FAPA. Faccioli hopes the school becomes «a tool to improve teacher-parent communication» and Martí described it as «a way to combine our efforts», assuring, «all of us here have the same goals».

The two FAPA representatives are eager to see parents taking an active role and enthusiastic about the prospects for experience sharing the school promises.

For her part, Labrador explained that the school for parents «was conceived as a place for continued education, shared experiences and group reflection» for the two key players in the educational community: families and teachers. She stressed, however, that the undisputed stars of the show are «the pupils themselves». As Labrador is quick to point out, «the goal of the conferences is to improve learning and find strategies to communicate with our students. To get to know them better, ensure our relationships with them are healthy. What this is really about is promoting healthy all-around development». The CEP will also coordinate a seminar with the same speakers for local teachers.

The school for parents includes following five talks:
- 24 February, 10 a.m. "Alta Capacitat Intel·lectual (High Intellectual Ability)" by ACTEF Eivissa-Formentera.
Place: CEP classroom – the old Sant Francesc schoolhouse

- 4 March, 7 p.m. "Sexe, drogues i...Bon Rotllo!! (Sex, drugs and...good vibes!! How to talk with your children)" by Paco Pérez, psychologist at CREIX and educator for teachers and families.
Place: Conference hall of the office of culture

- 10 March, 11 a.m. "Pedagogia sistèmica (Systemic pedagogy, new perspectives in education)” by Carles Parellada, teacher, specialist in psychomotricity and systemic therapy.
Place: CEP classroom – the old Sant Francesc schoolhouse

- 14 March, 7 p.m. "Intel·ligència emocional (Emotional intelligence: the emotional bond between you and your children)” by Julián Jorge, child and adult psychologist, educator and counsellor for families and schools.
Place: Conference hall of the office of culture

- 18 April, 7 p.m. "Comunitats d'aprenentatge (Learning communities: Meeting points for families and schools)” by Montserrat Íñiguez, founder of Joan Coromines school and educator in learning communities.
Place: Conference hall of the office of culture

Camí Vell nursery school to operate year round

escoletaThe education office of the Formentera Council has announced that the latest edition to the island's schools —the Camí Vell escoleta— will stay open all year long. Such was the announcement made by Susana Labrador, the local councillor of educational affairs. Labrador noted the nursery was originally intended as a relief resource for parents during the summer months, May to October. However, parents' requests that the school remain open even after summer's end were behind the decision to expand the service.

Start of the school year
Today was the first day of the 2015-2016 school year at the escoletes (nurseries) of Formentera. The two centres —Sa Miranda, which has seven classrooms, and Camí Vell, which has two— now boast 121 students and 15 teachers. At present seven available places at the Camí Vell nursery counter a twelve-child waiting list at Sa Miranda. Councillor Labrador announced that in the coming days families awaiting word from Sa Miranda would be contacted and given the opportunity to fill the spots still free at the Camí Vell escoleta. After that, the two schools' wait lists will be combined.

Escoletes represent the first stage in the educational process, creating a space where families can share the caregiving load. The goal is to forge an environment where growth can take place and children can be together. The spaces are conceived to facilitate creation, experimentation, fun and experience-sharing, all in a context that respects a variety of personal rhythms and styles.

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