RCE Czechia - 2021


Czech Republic
Schools for the Future
Basic Information
Title of project : 
Schools for the Future
Submitting RCE: 
RCE Czechia
Contributing organization(s) : 
Society for Creativity in Education
Charles University Environment Centre
Focal point(s) and affiliation(s)
Jana Dlouhá
Organizational Affiliation: 
RCE Czechia, Charles University Environment Centre
Format of project: 
3 year project of cooperation with schools
Language of project: 
Date of submission:
Additional resources: 
Final report and evaluation: https://czp.cuni.cz/knihovna/Kreativ/vyzkumna_zprava_spkv.pdf
Methodology: Evaluating the impact of creative education on the development of pupils' participation and competences
Methodology: "The city as a space for creative learning" https://czp.cuni.cz/knihovna/Kreativ/evaluace_JMNF.pdf
Henderson, L., Kuříková, M., Kroufek, R. (2021). Syntéza kreativního učení a vzdělávání pro udržitelný rozvoj v České republice. (Synthesis of Creative Learning and Education for Sustainable Development in the Czech Republic) Envigogika, 16(2). DOI: 10.14712/18023061.628
Henderson, L., Dlouhá, J. (2021). Myšlení budoucnosti a potřebnost transformativního přístupu ve vzdělávání. (Future thinking and the need for a transformative approach in education). Envigogika, 16(1). DOI: 10.14712/18023061.621
At what level is the policy operating?: 
Geographical & Education Information
Czech Republic
Address of focal point institution for project: 
José Martího 2
Praha 6
160 00 Czech Republic
Target Audience:
Socioeconomic and environmental characteristics of the area : 
Educational system in CR undergoes process of transformation, where sustainability perspective may receive new impetus. Combination of sustainable themes with creative approaches in education underpins transformative character of ESD. Cooperation with actors from creative sector introduced possibility to intervene in the "out-of-school" environment where desired changes were brought by school teams (outcome of projects realized during whole year).
Description of sustainable development challenge(s) in the area the project addresses: 
School children in CR are not empowered to decide and act in matters that concern them. This decision-making is value based - an opportunity to discuss and implement sustainability values in the formal education. Engagement of creative sector provides safe space for experimenting and developing relevant key sustainability competences such as self-awareness competency, collaboration competency, critical thinking competency normative competency etc.
June, 2020
Czech education is overwhelmingly concerned with facts about the past, presented in knowledge silos through frontal teaching. Opportunities for critical thinking, values reflection, collaboration, multiple ways of knowing, creativity, imagination and empowerment for active citizenship are largely absent. Students are not familiar with the idea that they will create their common future, and that the form the future takes is a matter of choice and intention.
One of the central goals of the project was to find opportunities to "hear the voice of the children", as expressed in article 12 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (and described as a "Lundy model of participation" (2007) that helps to involve children in decision-making in practice).
A) Development of transformational learning, futures thinking, the development of sustainability competencies and agency of pupils.
B) Support for activating teaching methods with an emphasis on creative education, integrated thematic teaching.
C) Development of values reflection, critical thinking, self-awareness, cooperation, and creativity.
D) Engaging schools, teachers and pupils in cooperation with artists to realize practically oriented projects in the context of the school environment
Activities and/or practices employed: 
The project embeds processes of participation and collaboration so that pupils have the opportunity to engage in important decisions (eg. selection of an artist/artistic medium, identifying project themes based on a mapping process of pupils’ interest and local sustainability challenges, selection of possible activities, implementation of a public forum). Activities offer place-based learning experiences, connection with real life in the local community, collaboration, responsibility towards the group for fulfilling their tasks, and presentation of the results to the public.
Size of academic audience: 
The classroom projects were presented to the public in May 2022. Evaluation together with methodology and action research tools and guidance for teachers investigating competence development were published in July 2022.
In practice, this project ran in two cycles: it started in the 2020/2021 school year and then ran again in 2021/2022 - mostly with the same classes/students, but with different projects. In total, 22 classes were involved in 2 cycles (with at least 20 classes in each cycle), 19 teachers were involved (with slight variations) in each cycle, 542 pupils were involved, of which 67 were pupils with special needs, and 30 artists. The specific actors involved in each project were: pupils, teachers, artists and a creativity consultant.
Lessons learned: 
1. We have learned that it is very important to support teachers to explore and reflect on the meaning of education and school before the project begins, to help them connect with the purposes of education beyond imparting and assessing knowledge.
2. Teachers need to trust their pupils and benefit from having the support of their schools while they take the risk of an open ended creative process.
3. Teachers report they get to know their pupils in a new light and teacher-pupil and peer relations improve. Creative learning is inclusive, and encourages wellbeing, a sense of agency, engagement and motivation among even pupils who often find it hard to engage. A more democratic and mutually respectful class environment is developed.
4. These factors provide supportive conditions for sustainability education which is inclusive, equitable, critical, value based and transformative. Pupils feel empowered to raise their voices for the benefit of the society/environment, in the framework of SDGs.
Key messages: 
Through hearing and reflecting the "voice of the child" by the teachers and adults, school children felt empowered to realize changes in the affairs that concern them. Value framework for these changes was provided by SDGs; tools to realize desirable (from the point of view of pupils) changes delivered multiple actors, including artists who supported creative thinking and action competences.
Relationship to other RCE activities: 
This project has been a contribution to the curricular reform in CR and to the work of the Czech Commission for UNESCO (RCE is engaged in both).
The project financing was raised by the Society for Creativity in Education, within the funding scheme of the city of Prague: "Operational Programme Prague – Growth Pole of the Czech Republic", from the European structural and investment funds (ESI).


File Name Caption for picture Photo Credit
Image icon Angazovanost_4185.jpg (1.79 MB) SDG initiative (coherence of goals) Jana Dlouhá
UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
(https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdgs) and other themes of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)
SDG 3 - Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages 
SDG 4 - Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all 
SDG 5 - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls 
SDG 9 - Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialisation, and foster innovation 
SDG 10 - Reduce inequality within and among countries 
SDG 11 - Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable 
SDG 12 - Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns 
SDG 13 - Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts 
SDG 14 - Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development 
SDG 15 - Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification and halt and reverse land degradation, and halt biodiversity loss 
SDG 16 - Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels 
SDG 17 - Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalise the global partnership for sustainable development 
Curriculum Development 
Plants & Animals 
ESD for 2030-Priority Action Areas
Priority Action Area 1 - Advancing policy 
Priority Action Area 2 - Transforming learning and training environments 
Priority Action Area 3 - Developing capacities of educators and trainers 
Priority Action Area 4 - Mobilizing youth 
Priority Action Area 5 - Accelerating sustainable solutions at local level 
I acknowledge the above: