Rationale for the Seminar

The main aim of the seminar is to exchange good practice and discuss the opportunities for future co-operation for ESD in the Carpathians, with special foci on two strands:  (1) the whole-institutional approach in ESD and (2) developing educator ESD competences, which are also included in UNECE recommendations.

As there is an emerging consensus that whole-institution approach of ESD is needed for the implementation of ESD. Whole institution approach is not just pedagogically recognized but supported and promoted by various international bodies. Hungary has good practices in whole-institutional approach in ESD at three educational levels: the Green Kindergarten Network in early childhood education and the Eco-school Network in primary and secondary school education. These can serve as inspiration for exchanging good practice.

Conclusions Council of the European Union 19 November 2010 urges EU member states to strengthen the whole institute approach of ESD in their educational systems. The UNECE Strategy for ESD work plan for the implementation period of 2017–2019 of has invited member states to encourage whole-institution approaches by establishing ESD school curricula, or embedding ESD in existing school curricula for every school by 2019.

Hungary has two significant systems for supporting whole institute approach in education: the Green Kindergarten Network and the Eco-school Network. This framework provides quality assurance and professional support for more than 2000 educational institutions nationwide, which cover approximately one-third of the students in the case of eco-schools. These systems and their achievements will be presented at the workshop in details, and opportunities for co-operation will be examined especially in the field of pedagogical tools and materials, integrating local traditions, and cooperation with protected areas into the educational practices as these areas were identified as the most important areas where the co-operation of ESD and SD experts and activities could be realized on the basis of the ESD implementation reports of Carpathian countries.  Besides introducing good practices, another focus set for the strand of whole-institutional approach is quality criteria.

Developing educator ESD competences has been a highlighted topic of international efforts and policy recommendation in the past two decades however practical implications are still in early stages. Therefore a transdisciplinary discourse on how educator ESD competences could be developed including quality training, assessment and motivation could bring about input for policy and practice as well.

Hungary has a future-leading initiative in this area as ESD competences were introduced to teachers’ professional competence portfolio in 2018. There are already a set of experiences from the early stage of implementation that could be presented in a workshop.

 

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