From March to May this year (2012), part of the Implementation of Participation Standards Activity, 20 schools in the 5 counties of the Oltenia region carried out public hearings focusing on the theme of Good Governance in School by means of Participation Standards Self-Assessment and Promotion in order to legitimize the selection and evaluation of participation standards; these are to be adopted as the basis, rationale and justification for future strategies, action plans and activities involving and engaging students, teachers, school boards, parents, local councilors and other stakeholders in supporting students` participation in decision-making processes in the school. The Good Governance in School Action Groups successfully organized public hearings presenting the audiences with an innovative approach to taking a stand and stating commitment for a cause deemed to benefit both school and community, namely signaling the need for active involvement in organizing, managing and prioritizing school affairs. Topical depositions revealed the challenging conditions leading up to the empowerment of the student body as fully recognized partners in conducting school affairs and as agents of a positive change in the running of school life; introducing students to their rights and responsibilities, to their role as proponents of school climate betterment and as informed decision-makers has never until now taken on such a high stake in Romanian schools.

The public hearings sequence is to be shortly followed by the completion of training modules for the members of the Good Governance in School Action Groups and complemented by a mid-term evaluation meeting which gathers school coordinators, school inspectors, national experts and National Youth Agency and Norfolk County Council representatives from the United Kingdom, and the project management team to determine the impact and results of activities implemented so far. Planning a course for action during this meeting spans to the end of October, when a surprise closing event of the Participation Standards for Active Citizenship Project is to take place at the same time, within the very same event, as the opening call and partnership invitation for a follow-up initiative which regards school educational and participation policies nation-wide.

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