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20/9/2011 - RMG - The Salesian School in Europe
Photo for the article -RMG – THE SALESIAN SCHOOL IN EUROPE
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(ANS – Rome) – Between 14 and 16 September at the Generalate there was a meeting of the Commission for the Salesian School  in Europe, organised by the Youth Ministry Department of the Salesians (SDB) and the Area of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians (FMA). Present at the meeting were the respective General Councillors  Fr Fabio Attard and  Sr Maria del Carmen Canales Calzadilla and other consultants in the sector, from countries in which the SDB and FMA are present with schools and centres of vocational training, 24 people in all.

During the meeting there was a presentation of the progress made in the Salesian school in Europe in the last 15 years. Work was done on the draft of a document which brings together the “Principles of the Mission” of the group, its tasks competence and composition. Reflection concentrated on the 5 key issues of interest for Salesian Schools and Vocational Training Today: the process of the selection, accompaniment and formation of teachers; the nature of the Salesian school; the Salesian school and pastoral work with the family; the school setting as the place where formal and informal education meet; the updating of the Preventive System.

Those taking part agreed to work during the next three years on some indicators of assessment regarding the nature and identity of the Salesian school. This will be done through three study groups which will have as their main mission the assessment of examples of good practice  already present in the SDB Congregation and in the Institute of the FMA. Work was coordinated by Sr Elena Rastello, from the FMA YM and by Fr Miguel Angel García, from the SDB YM.

Salesian commitment to education in schools and vocational training centres is currently to be found in 23 European countries and 29 Provinces. From European Provinces, similar work is being undertaken in  the Middle East (Egypt, Israel and Turkey) and in other countries (Capo Verde, Morocco and Tunisia). In the world of the school there are about 5000 teachers, Salesian and lay; a further 3250 are involved in vocational training.

All types of students, from the points of view of age and condition, are involved. The following data emerged in the meeting:

  • 270 schools with about 166,000 pupils at the following levels: infant schools (17%) primary (22%), secondary (35%), sixth form (22%) and technical institutes (3%).
  • 175 vocational training centres with about 47,600 students: centres providing  initial preparation  for  pre-work training (22%); middle school courses or initial vocational training cycles of course (51%); higher level or technical training courses (27%). 30% of the vocational training centres, in addition, provide continuous training. There are also 8 agricultural schools, 40 studentates and 30 student residential hostels connected with Salesian schools.

Published 20/09/2011

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