We would like to react to the article published in La Presse, edition of April 9, 2023, “The heroes of the shadows: the miracle factory”.
We are part of a school team from an adult education center (CEA). Although Déclic is a great organization and its mission is quite noble, the article contains some generalities and we would like to present some nuances and food for thought.
Finally, this letter wants to highlight that it is possible to do great things in a CEA and that we are the proof! So much the better if we can inspire other CEAs to follow suit.
Adult education (ADE) is not a dead end or a hole in education. It is reductive for the thousands of people who work there and who devote themselves to it day after day. We also do miracles.
We see success stories of all kinds every day! Students who pass their basic education and gain access to general education, that often happens. Will they all hold a DES, no! But does it really matter? Some will be able to obtain the prerequisites to go to a DEP and obtain a specialty in an X field. If this is not a success, we don’t know what more it would take!
We also experience great social successes! Because, for us, success is not only academic. Students face daily challenges. The data proves it; to learn, you have to be willing to learn. However, part of the work of a CEA is to guide students towards resources that will allow them to act on a social problem, and then the student will be willing to learn.
Concrete projects in EDA also exist. School service centers (CSS) receive allowances to meet certain needs.
Take, for example, the measurement of field trips. Our students have access to outings to museums, theatres, etc. We thus participate in their cultural awakening and these activities are an excellent gateway to other learning.
We have also developed a green project with the help of another government measure. Students supervised by a responsible teacher take care of the plants, make cuttings and seedlings to brighten up the centre. The project is growing this year with the development of a small community garden in the backyard and the construction of a greenhouse. Through such a project, students will certainly develop interests in horticulture and carpentry.
We are also diversifying our service offering with optional courses of all kinds to cover as many interests as possible: music, arts, 3D printing.
Resources not tracking? To say that students are left to their own devices with their dysphasia or dyslexia is completely false. On the contrary, the student can benefit from special support in AED with the various resources.
We have support teachers for students who are having difficulty. We have a remedial teacher, pedagogical advisers, psychoeducators, special education technicians, guidance counsellors. ADD can become a great learning environment. The amounts allocated must be used to meet these needs.
Generality and falsity. We offer the lecture history course and a pilot project mathematics course. Some second language teachers are also in explicit teaching several times a week.
These pedagogical practices are part of evidence-based practices. And they are used in our CEA. The individualized model has its shortcomings, of course. But if we decide to make it an opportunity for explicit strategic interventions, it can become a springboard to better learning.
It is wrong to say that the EDA does not have class management. Behavioral disorders, mental health are things to be managed on a daily basis. To claim that teachers are just waiting for questions is fraught with meaning and very dismissive for these education specialists.
The words of this article clearly demonstrate an intention to paint the ÉDA in the corner to make another service shine in a particular environment. It would have been interesting to broaden the range of research before writing down words that can hurt those involved. In fact, we invite you to come see us!
Finally, we would like to reiterate our commitment to all these students who are too often left on the bench. The EDA has been underfunded for a long time. She still is. We know there is work to be done on the ground.
What we wanted to make clear here is that it is possible to do better and that it is true that the ÉDA must question itself in order to face the changes it has been undergoing for decades and that ‘it must better respond to the needs of the pupils.
Several models of education can coexist. There are so many different young people, with different interests, different social opportunities and learning difficulties that the more places we can offer them to thrive, the more we will be able to propel them even higher. .