RENYO: Alternative perspective on young offenders education
How can we make learning motivating for young people with engagement issues? Is it possible to connect personal interests with formal education? Is there a way to re-engage young offenders in learning?
The RENYO projects has been working hard to provide a positive answer to these questions through an innovative methodology called Authentic Inquiry.
Authentic Inquiry is an intervention designed to build personally relevant knowledge which is useful in education. The learners’ interest is taken into consideration through their own narratives and stories and navigating this they arrive towards the production of an object such as a piece of art, poster or other product that has some external educational value. With RENYO, young offenders will be supported by a mentor to re-engage with the learning of something which is ‘authentic’ to them while acquiring new knowledge through this methodology.
On the 21st & 22nd January, RENYO partners met in Dresden, Germany in order to set the basis for the oncoming trainings on Authentic Inquiry with the educators and staff of secure institutions in England, Germany, Spain and Italy and to discuss the next stages of the project.
Moreover, the partners had the chance to visit Seehaus, a modern ‘free form’ custodial institution. Instead of fences and bars the young offenders follow a tight schedule which includes studying, doing handcrafts and earning points as a reward, while living in a family-like structure.
Lastly, the German Multiplier Event took place on the 23rd January. More than eighty people participated in the ‘Alternative Perspective on Education of Youngsters in Prison’ International Conference, where they had the opportunity to learn about Authentic Inquiry and experience their own.
What’s happening next in Italy?
Several trainings on learning engagement and the Authentic Inquiry methodology aimed at educators and social workers are in place between February and March 2020 in several secure settings and institutions working with young offenders.
About the project
RENYO – Re-engaging young offenders with education and learning is cofunded by DG EAC Erasmus+ programme, KA2 Strategic Partnerships for vocational education and training.
The partnership holds together 5 organisations:
- Coordinator: University of Gloucestershire (UK);
- Private Fachhochschule Dresden gGmbH (Germany);
- Fundacion Diagrama Intervencion Psicosocial (Spain);
- Learning Emergence Partners LLP (UK);
- CESIE (Italia).