A priority of the ongoing renewal of the public education system in Hungary is the introduction of extended schools, a tool of equity and support for differentiated education. The conference, organised by the HIERD on the 30th May 2014 in Budapest, summarised the results achieved so far and reviewed lessons learned along the way.
A goal of the event was to evaluate innovation processes related to the development of extended schools, which our Institute realizes through participatory action research together with 55 schools. In this process, more than 240 teachers participate in the project done in our Institute. The HIERD is developing professional solutions and methodological support for both lower elementary (years 1-4) and upper elementary (years 5-8) grades. The seven programs of the project include a framework for the lower elementary and one for upper elementary grades, a program of real life education, natural sciences education, complex arts education and a separate program for ecoschools.
The welcome speech of the conference was given by director-general Dr. József Kaposi, and then directors of the pilot program of the extended school project, Ms. Mária Kőpatakiné Mészáros, Mr. József Mayer, Ms. Mónika Réti and Dr. Attila Varga presented current developments, possibilities for equity and schools’ practice. The conference included lectures and interactive workshops, sharing of best practices and a roundtable talk about the notion of extended school and the possibilities for its realisation.