DESCRIPTION OF THE SUCCESS STORY
I am a mother and I am Dominican, my son Manuel has always been very lively, so I chose a path in private schools for him until the age of fourteen. In the choice of the secondary school, given the difficulties in the study and the lack of motivation of my son, I decided to enroll him at a Vocational School, specializing in Business Administration. My son has changed a lot while growing, his personality has revealed more and more rebellious and slightly inclined to studying, showing, at the same time, a lively intelligence and intuition. In the vocational school and in Prato school in particular, he has found his place. He met other young foreigners, but also Italian students and thanks to the teachers he was able to find the pleasure of going to school although with poor results. For me it was important to know that he was attending a safe environment and that teachers were concerned about his progress. He failed the first year, he was suspended several times, nevertheless I saw him glad to go to school and for me that meant removing him from the road. It was the year that he failed that, following the teachers' suggestion, I decided to have him examined by doctors, so I discovered that he was in the category of children with "specific learning disabilities". With this certification, things have slightly changed, his performance at school has significantly improved, but his motivation to study has always remained very poor. Nevertheless, he has passed to the second year and, when he has turned eighteen years of age, thanks to the orientation activity that had been done at school, he decided to leave his studies.Through the school he had the opportunity of an internship in a car repair shop. It is not certainly what I wanted for him, in my mother's heart, but I think that school and the path of socialization and experience collected at the end, all put him on the right track. I believe that school and teachers have played an important role in the education and training of the boy, parents are often alone to fight with their children, we can not handle them. Manuel has always given me problems since childhood and getting older problems have amplified. Moreover it is not easy for a single woman raising two kids, think about work and home at the same time. In the case of my son, I think school has done a lot for him, even if he has not got a diploma, I think he learned things that will be useful throughout his life. School has saved him from dangerous friendships - we live in the poor outskirts of Prato – has given him a new lease on a job and, even if he is just a body shop mechanic, he has found his way.
- Give evidence of the possible explanation of the success
The school has accounted for the pupil's mother a fundamental support to manage her own child. As the family was not able to step - in the training of their child, school has offered concrete opportunities for the student's growth. The ability to listen to and to understand the particular situation expressed by teachers has been a determining factor in managing this difficult relationship with the pupil.
- Analyse the interaction between the different actors involved
The mother's ability to understand her own limits, her trust in teachers who were able to grasp the concern and anxiety of the boy, all these elements have created a balanced situation in the psychology of the student. The latter was able to find a motivation to attend school and find a place in society.
- Describe the action of educational policy, either at local, regional or national level (If relevant)
The synergy between school and the world of work was essential to find a social redemption to the boy. Vocational Training is a fundamental purpose of the school reform, just to fight early school leaving among demotivated students.
- Identify and describe the transferability potential of the experience
The experience finds its transferability and in all those cases in which demotivated students with poor school performance are at risk of dropping out. The greater cooperation between schools and vocational training, as well as with employment centres, is the most successful strategy in the management of such cases.