For education systems to be inclusive, it is essential that the voices of those involved in the system are listened to and their opinions considered. Learners and their families rarely have the opportunity to impact decisions made about their education. This has been a particular issue during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Agency has launched a new project which aims to find effective ways to promote the voices of learners and their families in decision-making processes. The Voices into Action (VIA) project will identify effective ways to include the voices of learners and their families in policy development and implementation. It will analyse current policy and research evidence, look at examples of learner voice in previous Agency work, and explore approaches used in Agency member countries.
Project team members recently published an article in the Education Sciences journal. The article provides an overview of the main policy developments and key issues around learner voice and participation. It also presents previous Agency work that has directly involved young people in exchanges with policy-makers.
Project outputs will include a report on the project findings and a toolkit of practical methods to actively involve learners and their families in educational decision-making. Agency staff and country representatives will use the key messages to inform future work and ensure that it includes the voices of learners and their families. More broadly, decision-makers and education stakeholders will be able to consider these messages when developing and implementing education policy.
For more information, visit the VIA project page.