DEP and Educaweb have made a decisive contribution to the definition of a specific model of Psychopedagogic Department for the Fundació Escoles Garbí. Additionally, DEP is developing a study on Alumni of schools Garbí and Pere Vergés, with the objective of knowing what kind of graduate training they have undertaken, what their professional status and their social involvement is, their degree of satisfaction with their school period, etc.
When was the Escola Garbí (Garbí School) in Esplugues de Llobregat born?
Year 1965. And three years later, in 1968, the Pere Vergés Institution in Badalona was founded. Both schools were born, thus, in a complex environment of lack of freedom. Therefore it is so valuable, 45 years later, that the schools boosted a pioneer and innovative educational project in many aspects, taking into account our Catalan identity, then very battered.
Which are the principles of the teacher and pedagogue Pere Vergés which back up your schools’ educational criteria?
The Garbí School and the Pere Vergés Foundation are educational centres characterized by a high qualitative level of studies. Both schools offer a pedagogical model born of the Catalan educational tradition promoted by the teacher Pere Vergés, creator of an educational model based on three key concepts: ethics, science and aesthetics. Our purpose is that, in our schools, students learn to be critical and free, to know how to feel and live in harmony with others, to respect. Our model reproduces everyday relationships given in the city, where students, teachers, educators and other staff share responsibilities, take up leadership, experiment the joy of reading and sport and are aware of the importance of good nutrition. In this process, the figure of the teacher is a central pillar of our educational model and therefore we stand for a relationship of respect towards this authority.
The Escoles Garbí Foundation and the Pere i Robert Vergés Foundation aim at guaranteeing the permanence of this educational model.
The Escoles Garbí Foundation is the owner and holder of Escola Garbí in Esplugues and of the Pere Vergés Institution in Badalona. Likewise, the Pere i Robert Vergés Foundation is the owner of the Mas de Fortet de Capafonts (Tarragona) Holiday Camp and manages the activities offered to our students off the teaching hours: language school, sports and arts. This “city” implies a professional team of more than 250 people, giving service to 1.600 students and their families.
Is there a need to adapt the Pere Vergés educational Project?
His educational Project is completely valid. We bear in mind the essence of the values and the legacy of Pere Vergés and we’d like to boost his message. We count on the Pedagogic Council, an instrument guiding and concerned with that which gives it its maximum sense: a model for the education and training of 21st Century Citizens. The members who make up the Foundation’s Pedagogic Council, chaired by Salvador Giner are: Xavier Melgarejo, Andreu Mas Colell, Josep Maria Lozano, Josep Alsina and Montserrat Oliveras.
DEP and Educaweb have made a crucial contribution to the definition of a specific model of Psychopedagogic Department for the Escoles Garbí Foundation. Could you explain briefly?
The Psychopedagogic Department is a fundamental support offered by our schools in the framework of the students educational process, which includes psychopedagogic advising in all educational stages offered by us, that is, from Pre-school education (3 years) to Higher Education (18 years). Some years back we decided to make a sweeping reform of this service. Our starting point was a psychopedagogic department of assistential character, in which the actions and times of professionals were focused on the students with more difficulties. It was from DEP’s and Educaweb’s revision of the psychopedagogical model that we adopted a model with a preventive orientation, instead of a supportive one.
This model develops the analysis and teaching and learning processes of all students, and is aimed at supporting families from the school’s perspective. The Departments of both schools work closely together, and this enables us to take advantage of the synergies of owning two educational centres.
The psychopedagogic advising service is an essential element in the educational process then.
Yes, it reinforces our vocation of offering a maximum quality education in the interests of our students and their families. The role of teachers, psychologists and psycho pedagogues making it up is very important. It requires, thus, the collaboration and involvement of a large number of educational agents involved in the process, and it specially stresses the tutorial action. Tutors are a key figure in our students’ whole learning process, especially for those who have some kind of difficulty.
Tell us about the study that DEP is developing current 2010 on the Alumni of the Garbí and Pere Vergés schools.
The Garbí School opened its doors 45 years back, and so did the Pere Vergés Institution three years later. Since then we’ve had about 8.000 former students. The fact is that, just after their schooling period, we monitor them in order to know which studies they have chosen, but after that we have been loosing track. We now have the intention of creating the Alumni Network of our schools with the aim of not loosing contact with former students and being able to develop a joint project. But there’s a question of special interest for us: knowing the profile of our former students: which has been their post-graduate training, their professional status, their civil involvement and their satisfaction during the school period. Knowing these questions will help us to tailor-make the Alumni Network and inform our families and students whether the Garbí School and the Pere Vergés Institution, together with their families, have contributed to the education of individuals with a specific profile of citizens or not (it shall be established by the study). DEP’s collaboration enables us to carry out, via in depth interviews, this sociological study on the life stories of former students.