Tackling Early School Leaving during Covid-19 time: the DREAMS experience

Friday 5 March 2021

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Save the Children has officially sounded the alarm: an estimated 34 thousand students of secondary schools are at risk of early school leaving. In January 2021, the Organization published a research titled “Young people at the time of Covid-19”, based on a survey conducted on a sample of 1000 teenagers between 14 and 18 years old. The analysis showed that the 28% of students declares that at least one of their classmates – during the period between the first lockdown in March and today – would have stopped attending the lessons. And therefore, now more than ever, it has become essential to activate initiatives to prevent ESL, promoting the importance of school education since primary school. 

DREAMS is a 24-month strategic partnership composed of­ 3 ­schools and ­2 ­non-profit organizations­. The main aim of the DREAMS Project is to prevent ESL by supporting students, teachers, families and school community in assuring a smooth Primary to Secondary School transition with inclusion of all forms of diversity, by using theatrical techniques.

During the last months, in the context of the DREAMS project, different schools in Spain, Italy and Portugal piloted the workshop “The Trip”.

In Italy, the piloting has been conducted by a group of teachers of the Cassarà-Guida Comprehensive Institute of Partinico (Palermo), who successfully involved around 20 students attending the last year.

After taking a MOOC on techniques such as Process Work and Theatre of the Oppressed, teachers took their students on “The Trip” to the self-discovery, the uncovering of diversity and of the value of school. 

The activities, carried out with the necessary restrictions due to the pandemic, have thrilled students, who were able to appreciate the commitment of the school, especially in this emergency situation. The MOOC, together with pictures and videos with the experiences of teachers and students will soon be published, so that other students can replicate the activities with their students.

About the project

DREAMS – Fostering diversity in primary to secondary school transition to prevent early school leaving is cofinanced by Erasmus+ programme, KA2, Strategic Partnership School. The project’s main objective is to explore the needs of the students and the school community in relation to transition, with particular emphasis on gender, cultural diversity and minority groups, as well as on discrimination, bullying and any form of violence.


For further information

Read more about DREAMS, visit the project website and follow us on FacebookInstagramTwitter and YouTube.

Contact Giorgia Scuderi: giorgia.scuderi@cesie.org.