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Next year, Formentera's 'escoletes' will provide preschool care to 125 children

EscoletaAccording to the Formentera Council's education office, the island's two nurseries, or escoletes, have the resources available to give 125 children early-childhood care. Together, the pair, Sa Miranda and the Escoleta del Camí Vell (“the nursery on the old road” to la Mola), have announced their potential to take in 52 new pupils this autumn. The task of caring for the children falls to 16 instructors at the two schools, a sign, chief of education Susana Labrador said,  “of the Council's serious commitment to Formentera families”.

In 2017-2018, Sa Miranda will comprise seven groups—one for newborns (children born in 2017), three for one- and two-year-olds (infants, born in 2016) and three for two- and three-year-olds (toddlers, born in 2015). Eleven educators will be responsible for the school's 98 pupils and at least one aide will oversee children with special needs.

At Camí Vell there will be two groups, infants and toddlers, and overall capacity for 30. Next year, with three spaces in the toddlers' group left unfilled, the school expects to have a total of 27 pupils. Three people steer instruction at Camí Vell.

The two schools follow similar approaches and staff from the centres meet weekly to coordinate instruction. They also share a kitchen, and a cook and kitchen assistant in charge of daily meals.

Education through art

Foto educartThe Formentera Council's Offices of Youth Services and Education have thrown their support behind Educart, a project of Marc Ferrer secondary school to educate with art. A year in the making, Educart takes place every day this week between 11.00am and 1.30pm at Es Molí social centre located at 88, avinguda Porto-Salè.

The goal of Educart, besides bringing art to Formentera youth, is to put them in the creative driver's seat. Participants hail from all of the island's schools and from every level of schooling, from nursery through secondary. The student-teacher initiative will culminate in an art show at Es Molí.

Nursery school signups from May 2

foto escoletaThe Formentera Council's Office of Education has announced that registration for the island's nursery schools will run May 2 to 16. Applications can be picked up and will be accepted for submission at the Citizen Information Office (OAC). No late applications will be admitted. Submissions can also be made across OAC's online platform, Virtual Citizen Information Office (OVAC).

Included among the enrolment material applicants will receive is a list of information that will be requested and used to determine placement. As per criteria established in educational committee, priority will be given to single-parent households and children from multiple births. Applicants with questions are encouraged to visit Escoleta Sa Miranda Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 2.00 to 3.00pm or Escoleta de Camí Vell on Wednesdays at the same hour.

Cash for used school books, travel expenses and higher ed programmes

Assistance for used textbook purchases, travel expenses and higher education are among the applications whose deadline will come due May 11, according to an announcement from the Formentera Council's Office of Education. Department head Susana Labrador called the money “a helping hand for local students” and “complementary to anything that may be provided from the other administrations in Palma and Madrid”. This year, as last, the total amount of assistance is €93,000.

Help for textbook purchases
The Council has pledged €45,000 in aid for second-hand textbooks. The money will go to primary and secondary schools on the island that add used textbooks to their libraries during the 2016-2017 school year.

Assistance packages will depend on the number of eligible pupils enrolled at schools with used textbook programmes in place. As a rule, €50 will be dispersed per primary student and €70 for their peers in secondary. Large families and single-parent families will each be eligible for 100% coverage.

Travel costs
Help is also available for students in higher education, training, accredited post-secondary and art programmes not offered locally. The Council has said it will put €38,000 into such assistance, dispersing it in €150 increments to students attending class on Eivissa or in distance learning programmes and €450 allotments for students whose studies take them outside the Pityuses.

Higher education assistance
Ten thousand euros (in portions of €1,250) have been earmarked for students who reside on Formentera and apply for higher ed programmes like university, art, vocational training, fine arts and design and sport. Such grants will be available for face-to-face programmes at public institutions. Students of private learning institutions may only apply in cases where a given field of study is not offered at public schools.

Eligibility conditions can be found here: http://conselldeformentera.cat/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&id=351&Itemid=437&lang=ca. Applications must be submitted in person at the Citizen's Information Office (OAC) or online via the OVAC.

May 11 deadline
For more information, please contact the Office of Culture, Education and Patrimony of the Formentera Council. The deadline is May 11. Last year 103 students received travel expenses help, eight won grants for higher education and 73 got textbook assistance.

Formentera pupils sketch their grandparents

Entrega premis concurs dibuix 2016 1At 11.30 this morning, the vice-president and education councillor of the Formentera Council, Susana Labrador, together with the administration's social welfare and youth services councillor, Vanessa Parellada, met at the Formentera Day Centre to attend the awards ceremony for a drawing contest. “Els meus avis” (“My grandparents”) was organised by the Council as part of the celebration behind Universal Children's Day. Users of the Day Centre were in charge of handing out prizes to six winning school children and two others who received honourable mention. All were given a 50-euro voucher, to be used either on educational or sports supplies according to the youngsters' preference.

The contest boasted participation from a total of 500 students from across Formentera's schools. One hundred fifty drawings were selected and will be displayed at the Day Centre entrance through February. On the jury sat professionals and Day Centre users alike. This year has been the second that the administration organises the drawing contest. As part of this year's theme, participants were asked to depict their grandparents.

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