From March 29 to April 1 the Central European educational platform “aces - Academy of Central European Schools” took place in Prague. Almost 350 pupils, teachers and ministry representatives from 15 different countries came together in the capital of the Czech Republic. Special guests were Erhard Busek, chairman of the Advisory Board of ERSTE Foundation and former Head of the Stability Pact for Southeastern Europe, and Jindřich Fryč, Director General of the Section for International Relations and EU Affairs from the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, Czech Republic.
The school network aces was founded by ERSTE Foundation in 2006. Today 15 countries are part of the network. Every year a project competition for school partnerships is carried out. An international selection committee chooses the best projects which are awarded with a grant. The awarded schools are supported during their project implementation and are invited to international network meetings like the one in Prague. So far 275 schools have been awarded within three project cycles by the programme whereas more than 700 schools have submitted project proposals. The initiative is coordinated by the non-profit organisations Interkulturelles Zentrum and VČELÍ DOM and is supported by the Ministries of Education of all participating countries. The aim is to bring teachers and students from Central and South Eastern Europe together. “The best experience of Europe is when you talk with other Europeans, when you travel around it and communicate with each other. The sooner you start doing this, the better. With aces, we are giving many young people the opportunity to contact others of their own age within the European neighbourhood for the first time”, Boris Marte, Member of the Board of ERSTE Foundation explains.
700 teachers and 5.400 pupils have been involved in 45 awarded projects focusing on conflicts in school and society during the project cycle 2010/2011. Now the project representatives came together in Prague to present the results and exchange their experiences. Finally, at the aces Ceremony on Thursday, March 31, five projects were honored with a special achievement award. “All aces projects are unique in one way or another. But some of them are outstanding in their approach to, for example, actively involve the students into decision-making processes, some of them use very innovative methodologies and some don’t shy away from addressing controversial issues, bridging gaps or overcoming stereotypes”, Danica Lacová from VČELÍ DOM and Reinhard Eckert from Interkulturelles Zentrum explain.
For further information please see the Press release (PDF).
Contact (for media inquiries):
ERSTE Foundation, Communications
Maribel Königer, Tel. +43 (0) 50100-15453, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Interkulturelles Zentrum, Communications
Barbara Hämmerle, Tel. +43 (0)1/586 75 44 -12, E-mail: email@example.com