Description of Croatian partner
Ekonomska i turistička škola Daruvar is a medium-sized vocational school that gives young people an opportunity to get a degree in various fields (economy, hotel and catering industry). Daruvar is economically quite unfavourable for young people as they do not have too many opportunities to find a job. Many families decide to move from such a socio-economically disadvantaged area. There are less students every year and the school tries to win a respectful reputation in a wider local and regional community and motivate students to get enrolled by taking part in many different extra curricular activities amongst which are multilateral projects Comenius and Leonardo, which was chosen as an example of good practice by our National agency in 2012, and international competition AEHT, in which our student won gold medal presenting a foreign destination.
Nowadays it is hard to compete for students with grammar schools as most of them want to get a wider education and not only specialize in a particular field. The challenge of working in a vocational school is also teaching classes with mixed abilities, as our students come from different elementary schools with different knowledge, especially in core subjects such as Maths, the Croatian language and English, so teachers have to tackle with different issues, most likely trying to find the right balance while teaching students of lower knowledge and students with higher abilities who might feel neglected and bored. There are also a few students with different disabilities and they are treated as students with special needs. The school programme is either individualized or adjusted to their needs or abilities.
We are keen on participating in this project mainly because the topic of the project is rural tourism. Daruvar is a tourist resort and being so small we consider it a rural area, so this project deals with the topic our students are familiar with and they can actually give a great contribution to it, not only will they widen their knowledge in the field they are trained in, but also will promote their own area and make better contacts with the local community. We want to teach our students to respect their heritage and traditions, therefore we want them to obtain a greater practical knowledge of the area they live in but we also want them to learn about other places and traditions in Europe and arouse their awareness of the world around them. They will get a practical experience in the field they are taught in.