Working groups are set up by a group of Ministries of Education to tackle a specific issue. The remit and duration are defined by the Ministries involved.
1.ICT@SCHOOL Indicators Working Group
Description: The ICT@school Indicators Working Group (WG) exchanges about existing national surveys on ICT at school, discusses their various results, and provides possible follow-up actions to improve the monitoring of ICT developments in education at cross-country, European, and global levels in a comparative way. In 2022, one focus of the WG was the national survey on the impact of COVID-19 in Croatia, which provided important insights on how the change of setting and logistics affected the teaching and learning experiences of teachers and students. The survey also highlighted the importance of students' socialisation and well-being. The WG also explored a report on the digitisation of education in Switzerland. The report provides an extensive literature review, including 56 meta-analyses of studies on the impact of digital education. Digital device use is correlated with lower student success, possibly because digital methods are used as a remedial action for low-achieving students. The report also shows the variation in digital resource quality and infrastructure, and the variation in digitalisation between schools and education systems.
The WG also exchanged about digital education action plans with a focus on Ireland, as many countries have developed or are in the process of developing their new cycle of digital strategy. Many WG members are currently working on their country's participation in international surveys such as ICILS and PISA and had the opportunity to share their experiences.
In 2022, the ICT@School Indicators Working Group (WG) grew larger, now counting 23 participating countries: Belgium (both Flemish and French-speaking communities), Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and Turkey.
2. Interactive Classroom Working Group
Description: The Interactive Classroom Working Group brings together seven Ministries of Education, from Belgium (Flanders), Czechia, Ireland, Italy, Luxemburg, Portugal and Switzerland, to explore common areas of concern, share experiences and address policy challenges related to the integration of a wide range of technologies in classrooms and their impact on teaching and learning.
In 2022, the group met regularly to discuss the work plan and progress on the research on effective digital learning approaches and practices, contributing to the formation of the Guidelines for teaching & learning online as part of the ‘new normal'. During the 2022 edition of the School Innovation Forum, the group had the chance to hold a hybrid meeting, and most members of the group attended the EMINENT conference in Dublin. The group has been reflecting on substantially reshaping and adapting the remit of the Working Group in 2023.
3. The Ministries of Educations' Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) representatives Working Group (MoE STEM WG)
Description: This Working Group is a platform of discussion and exchange for Ministries of Education regarding their STEM education policies. The overall objective of this initiative is to help lay the foundations for medium and long-term strategies and activities between Ministries of Education in the field of STEM education, especially within the Scientix project, following an agenda that addresses the Ministries' priorities and main interests. European Schoolnet coordinates the Working Group. The group was launched in March 2016, and the Ministries of Education are responsible for appointing members.
24 Ministries of Education from 23 countries have confirmed their participation and appointed a STEM representative as of 8 October 2020, including Belgium (Flanders), Belgium (Wallonia), Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Spain, and Turkey.
4. Digital Citizenship Working Group
Description: The Digital Citizenship Working Group, composed of members or nominees from Ministries of Education (MoEs), was established in 2017. It tackles challenges related to digital citizenship while keeping teachers and schools actively involved in its debates and in the design of its action plans.
The Working Group typically meets twice per year with the aim to:
- - develop a strategic digital citizenship framework and give a steer to European Schoolnet's digital citizenship roadmap;
- - provide a platform for exchange between European Schoolnet network members, identifying best practices to share and challenges to overcome;
- - identify gaps and explore new areas of work.
There are 18 countries/members participating in the working group: Belgium (Flemish community), Belgium (French community), Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, Latvia, and Serbia.