Social Hosting Hub: parents involved in educational activities, too
Prof. Sabina Troja plays an important role in the Education Office of the Nicolo Garzilli School in Palermo, directed by Angela Mineo. As an educational coordinator at the school, Sabina is responsible for the PTFO and the coordination of the curricula. Moreover, she also is on the RAV Evaluation and Improvement Committees. She collaborates with all other coordinators.
“The school population is mainly composed of students from the families of professionals, entrepreneurs, employees and craftsmen. […] A certain number of students exhibit issues in building relations due to the many separations with their parents, solitude in general and long leaves of absence for work or other, also by their parents. Generally, the families are motivated to provide their children with a quality education and have high expectations” (School Curriculum).
Sabina’s outlook is important to understand the impact of activities such as Social Hosting Hub on schools and the educational community.
“Courses on digital skills raise a lot of curiosity. In fact, digitalisation is accelerating stratospherically, and has driven teachers to update their skills, too. So, we chose not to involve only students and teachers in the course, but parents, too, so there would be no puzzle pieces left out. Moreover, many of our children emulate our behaviour. So, the on-line activities of parents are imitated by children. Or, in other words, if parents do not have a good understanding of on-line risk, their children won’t either. Teachers can intervene up to a certain point, but it is fundamental for parents to have an adequate education on certain issues, so they can help children with their on-line life,” explains the teacher.
The opportunity of involving parents in an educational action is important for the school, as it often encounters issues in interacting with certain negative educational stances. “High expectations, at times, turn into inacceptable personal requests that also attempt to influence the content and strategy of didactic activities. There have been attempts to condition general organisational aspects in terms of one’s interests and beliefs.”
“The issues that we have addressed most safely included safe navigation and protection of on-line data. Participants learn about things that may seem obvious, but they are not. Moreover, it may be useful to produce informative material to provide through the school website to anyone who is interested.”
Sabina Troja is certain that “we will all benefit from this reflection on the use of social networks.” And as a school we want to provide continuity to this course. “I hope that next year there will be further sessions to reinforce our digital knowledge and skills.”
Project Social Hosting Hub is one of the winners of the Google.org Impact Challenge on Security, a fund that helps non-profit organisations developing practical and real solutions to contrast hate and extremism, and to help children be safe on- and off-line. The objective of the Fondazione Mondo Digitale and partner organisations Action Aid, Comunità di Sant'Egidio and Parole O_Stili, is to create and coordinate the first phyrtual (physical and virtual) ecosystem made of connections, relations and communities.