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Fare Scuola at the first Internazionale Kids festival


The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated school dropout rates and educational inequalities. Tackling these issues by rethinking school spaces to stimulate learning and social relations is the goal of Fare Scuola, a project launched in 2015 thanks to the collaboration between Enel Cuore Onlus, our Group’s charitable organization, and Fondazione Reggio Children. Over the past few years, Fare Scuola has promoted over 76 educational and architectural projects in Italy’s schools, involving more than 10,000 children, 300 teachers and 40 designers.

The values and outcomes of the project were presented on Saturday, September 18, during the first Internazionale Kids festival in Reggio Emilia, in a panel event under the title, “Fare scuola in pandemia. Come sta cambiando e come può cambiare la scuola con il Covid-19” (lit, “Fare scuola during a pandemic. How school is changing and could continue to change with Covid-19”;“fare scuola” is a play on words based on an Italian expression that means both “to pioneer” and “to teach”). 

The event was moderated by Internazionale journalist Anna Franchin and open to students, families and teachers. The panel included Filippo Rodriguez, Managing Director of Enel Cuore, Carla Rinaldi, President of Fondazione Reggio Children; and Caterina Gotte, a teacher and digital educator who supervised one of the projects carried out by Fare Scuola at the Marino Mazzacurati primary school in Galliera, near Bologna. 

“One of our pillars,” Filippo Rodriguez explained, “is the commitment to fight early school leaving and educational poverty, to avoid serious repercussions on the future of young people and society in general. The Fare Scuola project meets a need that is more relevant than ever.” 

According to Istat data from 2020, there are approximately 500,000 so-called ‘early leavers’ or ‘dropouts’ between the ages of 18 and 24 in Italy today: young people who have completed middle school at best, and are not currently enrolled in other courses or training. According to the European Union’s guidelines, this phenomenon must be addressed starting from nursery and primary school. “Fare Scuola’s answer,” Rodriguez goes on, “is to redevelop spaces and use educational tools to create spaces where learning and social interaction are fostered, encouraging initiatives for inclusion.”

The quality of the spaces intended for education is the main focus of the project, as Carla Rinaldi explained: “School is something you do, something you build every day, but the space where this happens cannot be a mere background: it must have a central role. For this reason, with Enel Cuore, we started by listening to children, parents and teachers, and then gave back renovated school buildings where people are valued, and communities come together.”

Fare Scuola’s interventions have made it possible to recover abandoned or little-used areas in schools, turning them into environments where it is possible to experiment and learn in new ways, as in the case presented by Caterina Gotte: “In the school I worked on, two classrooms were transformed into digital laboratories equipped with interactive panels, video projectors and microscopes. Thanks to these facilities, the children were able to partially compensate for the limitations imposed by the pandemic, by conducting research and creating a virtual museum of minerals.”