In a context where the scientific basis for policy making is aiming non-custodial measures for children, but strategies, in a moment of increased terrorism actions in Europe, need to ensure the security, it is particularly challenging to address juvenile justice issues.
Yet, EIGEP project (European International Guidelines for Education Professionals when working with Children in Juvenile Justice Learning Contexts) propels with its intention to create a platform of models to work with, to improve and adapt, from multidisciplinary points of view; its long term results are meant for all European countries. Investing in education, moreover, in informal education, in human resources and ensuring the transition of young offenders are components of long-term work intended to be developed through the project.
Across different countries, the understanding of the concept of ‘education’ and what it encompasses may vary. For example what in one country might be considered “education” might be referred to in another country as “treatment”.
EIGEP focuses on reducing the disparities in the learning outcomes of the educational experience of a child within the juvenile justice, compared to the ones delivered in mass education. At this end, the conceivers of the project found out there is a need for the professionals to acquire an understanding of the educational process as a special needs one, with an approach that differs from the mass education, but allows the juveniles to have access at the same means and at the same range of results. Thus, professionals must to develop a specific set of tools, procedures, strategies and policies to organize a specialized area for working through and for education with juveniles who committed outlawful acts.
The objectives of the project organize around:
Improving the learning outcomes of education in juvenile settings through:
(a) the development of innovative European induction tool for the initial and further training of educators teaching in juvenile justice contexts (youth detention centers, youth service centers, alternative detention, Alternative Provision schools);
(b) the development of support tools and networks to improve the availability and quality of European training offer to education& teaching professionals interested in juvenile justice as a learning context;
Improving the management of teaching & learning professionals through measures to develop the learning dimension of the juvenile justice system in the partner countries and at European level.
In this sense, EIGEP project established a partnership with countries from Portugal, Romania, Lithuania and United Kingdom.
The upper hands of the partnership regard it’s specificity within national procedures that can be later on addressed at European level: the end users, the target group and the major stakeholders, reflect a major part of the community around the children in juvenile justice.
From the content perspective, the innovative aspect of the project stands out by the approach of a highly disadvantaged learning context, while from the work method perspective it creates tools that are relevant at European level and basic for any reform in delivering quality educational outcomes in any system, particularly juvenile justice system.
EIGEP Project (more details on www.eigep.eu) is co-financed by the European Commission under the “ERASMUS + K3 Further Looking Cooperation Projects”. (It brings together state and private actors from education, justice, community and business, with the purpose of experimenting community-based solutions in assuring quality education processes within juvenile justice settings.)
The Center for promoting lifelong learning – CPIP is a non-governmental, non-profit institution active in the educational and social field. We devlop national and international projects on various social and educational topics.