The EUROPE project focuses on the implementation in a broader European context of a novel approach, known as the Quiet Time programme based on Transcendental Meditation (Quiet Time/TM) for schools, that has the potential to contribute to National and European strategies in answer to the Paris Declaration (1, 2), being a whole-school proven approach for promoting social inclusion, tolerance, non-discrimination, personal development and other factors that prevent violent extremism, and to lead to a mainstreaming roadmap for evidence based policy actions/guidance at European and National level, thus helping to foster the role of education in promoting equality, social cohesion, nurturing mutual respect and embedding fundamental values in society.
This original, unconventional, pioneering, learner-centred approach in the field of education, training and youth, addresses the root-cause of negative attitudes and violence and promotes tolerance amongst diverse populations by promoting the psycho-physiological well-being of students, including those with disadvantaged backgrounds, and by allowing the experience of profound inner peace and calmness, thereby providing participants with the unifying experience of the source of all diversity. The Quiet Time/TM programme is easy to implement at all levels of education, easy to learn and religion and philosophy neutral.
The general objective of the EUROPE project is to upscale, assess the relevance, impact and scalability and disseminate the Quiet Time/TM approach in different European contexts.
The specific objective of the EUROPE project is to Adapt and transfer the chosen good practice, in 3 countries (Nederland, Sweden, and Portugal), in at least 1 school per country, with at least 150 students per school (age 10 to end of secondary school), targeting schools with minority students or those with disadvantaged or migrant background.
The main activities of the project therefore are:
- Implementation of the Quiet Time/TM programme in the schools in a European context.
- Assessing the ability of the Quiet Time/TM programme to:
– create an inclusive learning environment and reducing violence
– support teachers and other educators in dealing with the increasing diversity of learners
- Evaluating the Quiet Time/TM programme from a policy development perspective by providing evidence that it is sound and practical.
- Disseminating findings of the implementation and the evaluation framework to support trans-national cooperation between the partners involved in the project and European ministries, policy makers, and key stakeholders interested in the outcome of the project, creating awareness about the Quiet Time/TM programme and the established support structures and offerings.
- Drawing policy conclusions through international cooperation including MoEs, leading to a manual of best practices and a mainstreaming roadmap for evidence-based policy guidance.
- Establishing sustained support structures, including a European expert centre for the implementation of the Quiet Time/TM programme.
The specific target groups of the EUROPE project are:
- Students: In particular disadvantaged students from the age of 10 to the end of secondary education, targeting schools with a high percentage of disadvantaged students, including students with lower learning outcomes and those with migrant and minority
- Teachers and teaching staff, a significant number of whom show a high level of stress, anxiety, depression, and burnout.
- Wider school community: being the Quiet Time/TM programme a whole school approach, the final beneficiary of the project are all students, including students with lower learning outcomes and with disadvantaged social backgrounds.
- Policy Makers in school education
- Education sector at national level
COMMUNITY OF STAKEHOLDERS
- Youth/students networks and associations
- Heads associations
- Parents associations, school service providers
- Civil society organizations
- Other organizations working in the education sector
- Organizations working with migrants.
- Quiet Time/TM programme implemented and evaluated in Holland, Sweden and Portugal in at least 1 school per country, involving at least 150 students per school.
- Reports of the evaluation of benefits:
– for students, with measures of: stress, anxiety, negative behavior, violence, non-discrimination, respect and understanding, positive pro-social outcomes, such as tolerance, moral reasoning, resilience, coping ability, and academic performance.
– for teachers: self-confidence, motivation, tolerance and flexibility, perceived stress, levels of anxiety and mental health problems, job satisfaction and levels of teacher burnout.
– for the whole school community: atmosphere at school, inclusive learning environment, violence and bullying.
- Scientific Articles published in specialized journals, websites and presentations in seminars and congresses for bringing awareness of the Quiet Time/TM programme and the project results and evaluation;
- Manual of best practices and road map to guide policy makers in the implementation of the Quiet Time/TM programme in other contexts;
- Online support infrastructures and interest communities involving teachers, head teachers, pedagogical co-ordinators, parent representatives from schools, students associations, heads associations, parents associations, policy makers and other interested stakeholder at grass root level to keep them up-to-date through all the channels of dissemination about the results and get them acquainted with the approach of implementing Quiet Time/TM within schools
- Creation of sustained support structures, including a European expert centre for the implementation of the Quiet Time/TM programme, to provide long-term support for the exploitation of the EUROPE project results on a larger scale.
Long Term Systemic Impact
The EUROPE project aims to stimulate policy actions that will have a measurable quantitative systemic impact on education, not only in the countries with partners involved in this project, but also in other European countries. The aim is to create a system of education in Europe where every student can realize his or her full potential in an inclusive school environment.
In fact, the benefits of the Quiet Time/TM programme will reach far beyond migrant, minority and disadvantaged learners, but to all students because this approach includes the whole school community, thereby also impacting the system of education on a qualitative level, with all students, teachers, staff, administrators, parents, and the whole community benefiting from the effects. In addition, the programme is applicable to all levels of education, including ECEC, primary, secondary, upper secondary, second chance, VET, adult education, youth field, and entrepreneurship education.