Over 1,200 students and 162 teachers from both sides of Cyprus brought together in 2019/2020

(Reposted from: Cyprus Mail.  June 3, 2020)

The Bicommunal Technical Committee on Education said on Wednesday it had completed the ‘Imagine’ programme for the school year 2019-2020, bringing together 1,285 students and 162 teachers from Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot schools from all areas of Cyprus during the academic period.

The committee was established after the agreement between the two leaders in December 2015 and aims to implement confidence-building measures in schools and promote contact and co-operation between students and educators from the two communities. ‘Imagine’ addresses primary, lower and upper secondary and vocational schools.

During the third consecutive year of the programme, 92 head teachers were also invited to participate in a conference and workshop on Transformational Leadership for Peace.

Due to the ongoing situation with coronavirus, the programme ended with an online webinar for teachers in collaboration with German NGO Gesicht Zeigen!  The final event titled ‘Covid-19 changes our world – what’s our response as educators?’ took place with the participation of 34 Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot teachers from all levels of education.

The co-chairs of the bicommunal committee, Dr Meltem Onurkan Samani and Dr Michalinos Zembylas, were also present. The remaining activities falling under the scope of ‘Imagine’ – including teacher training and study visits – will continue with the beginning of the new school year.

In total, ‘Imagine’ has managed to bring together, since June 2017, some 5,091 students accompanied by 582 teachers, while 287 teachers and 92 head teachers were trained in peace education.

Around 589 students (out of the 5,091) also participated in sustainability activities “paving the way for long-lasting relationships and an enriched understanding of peace”.

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