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In 2010, a new action of the Comenius - Lifelong Learning Programme, Comenius Individual Pupil Mobility, was introduced in Poland. The action aims at making it possible for pupils to study in a school abroad. Staying in another European country aims to develop in pupils understanding for cultural and linguistic diversity of Europe and provide them with competences indispensable for personal development. For schools, this new action is an excellent opportunity for strengthening international cooperation. Pupil mobility is to contribute to mutual recognition of learning outcomes at partner schools and to strengthen European dimension of school education.
The action is addressed to pupils (aged 14 and older) of secondary schools, which have implemented school partnerships under the Comenius programme. Comenius Individual Pupil Mobility can be staged only by schools participating in the same project. Exchanges are allowed between partner institutions in Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Spain, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden and Italy. Pupils can stay at partner schools for a period ranging from 3 to 10 months. Young people stay with host families, which provide them care and free accommodation and board. Project co-financing consists in: a lump sum amount of EUR 150 per pupil (project administration costs of the sending school), a lump sum amount of EUR 500 per pupil (project administration costs of the host school), a lump sum amount of EUR 120 for pupil linguistic preparation, actual return travel costs, and a lump sum amount of monthly pocket money for the pupil.
During their stay abroad, pupils are covered by comprehensive insurance funded by the European Commission. Prior to joining the action, you must become acquainted with the contents of and specimen documents included in the Guide to Comenius Individual Pupil Mobility, which presents in detail the roles, deadlines, tasks, and obligations of all parties to exchanges, as well as all indispensable documents.
Apart from implementing a joint project and submitting an application, partner schools must conclude and implement a Learning Agreement, which stipulates in detail major objectives and outcomes of a study period spent by a pupil abroad and makes it possible for the sending school to recognise the study period abroad, or at least a part of it.
Teamwork is the main prerequisite for Comenius Individual Pupil Mobility projects. They require commitment on the part of many individuals and institutions (sending school, host school, contact teacher, mentor, host family and the pupil).
Michał Waszczuk, the Comenius Programme