The primary aim of the «Climate Change Agents» project is the integration of Climate Change Learning into the partner schools’ curricula as part of their shared long-term vision of a Whole School Approach towards promoting Social Inclusion and combating Early School Leaving. The pupils of all partner schools come from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. By developing our pupils into Climate Change agents, our project aims to develop the key literacy and digital competences of pupils as well as their civic competences. This project is a key strategic step in our continued interconnected work with two European level projects: the Erasmus + KA229 project «We are European, We are Equal» (developed by three of the project members) and «Climate Action Agents of Change,» our ongoing eTwinning project. «Climate Change Agents» fits with the European Commission’s priorities for 2019-2024 alongside the National Horizontal priority of Social Inclusion and the specific priority for the School Education sector of Early School Leaving.

The objectives of the project can be split into pupil, teachers, and stakeholder categories: For pupils, we continue our strategic plan of improving attendance using prevention, intervention and compensation strategies to re-engage early leavers; as climate change has been chosen by pupils as the main theme to motivate them to stay in education, we want to raise awareness about climate change and sustainability for the most vulnerable; and finally to promote Social Inclusion, we want our pupils to be fit for the digital age by developing their digital competences through eTwinning. For teachers, we will share Whole School Approach strategies to prevent early school leaving; we will offer training to identify early signs of social exclusion and the necessary tools to help integrate pupils; we will strategise the integration of Climate Change education into the curricula; and teachers will improve their digital competences. For other stakeholders, we will raise awareness about the vulnerability of families from disadvantaged backgrounds in the issue of climate change; we will empower families through new alliances with the schools to support them dealing with social exclusion; and we will encourage the involvement of parents in networks connected to the school to prevent Early School Leaving.

The «Climate Change Agents» project will involve 180 pupils aged 12-14. We estimate that over 1000 pupils will be indirectly impacted by the activities in the partner schools during the project and post-project. There will be 12 teachers involved as part of the Steering Committee plus 24 more teachers as part of the coordination and implementation teams. There will also be 360+ parents and family members impacted by the creation of new synergies of Social Inclusion and reducing Early School Leaving as well as steps towards combating the impact of Climate Change on the most vulnerable. For pupils, key activities include a peer mentoring scheme to be completed on eTwinning and in person during mobility trips, workshops on 7 key areas of Climate Change, and multi-disciplinary group projects to develop digital competences. For teachers, key activities include seminars and workshops on a Whole School Approach to promoting Social Inclusion and Combating Early School Leaving through the integration of Climate Change Education into school curriculum.

We envisage clear manageable, measurable, and achievable results for all those involved: For pupils, the results will be the development of key academic and civic competences through collaborative learning during mobility trips and on eTwinning, the development of their knowledge of Climate Change, and the long-term improvement in their attendance alongside lower levels of Early School Leaving. For teachers, the results will be the realisation of the successful Integration of Climate Change in each partner school’s curriculum, the development of new physical and digital teaching resources, and the development of teachers’ digital competences. For stakeholders, particularly parents, the results will be the support networks to ensure their children stay in education and break the cycle of social exclusion.

The «Climate Change Agents» project has long term benefits for all involved. For pupils, we are certain that by integrating Climate Change Learning into the curriculum and delivering this learning through the development of key competences will motivate them to stay in Secondary Education and break the cycle of Social Exclusion. For teachers, we are certain that they will realize the vision of a Whole School Approach to combatting Early School Leaving and Social Exclusion through the development of the school curriculum and their pedagogical practices. And for parents, we are certain that the project will empower them to encourage their children to stay in education and break the cycle of Social Exclusion.

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