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IPA 2 – Improving school transitions (2019 – 2022)

The two-year Erasmus+ project IPA2 started in 2019 with the aim to decrease difficulties that students on the autism spectrum face, specifically during the transition from primary to secondary school, in order to tackle early school leaving and disadvantage. Funded by the European Commission, the outputs of this project targeted both teachers, and autistic students and their peers in order to implement prevention measures and reduce risks of social exclusion, school failure, and school dropout.

At school level, students on the autism spectrum have specific needs in different educational stages, since difficulties derived from the disorder itself are heightened by the demands at school. It is during the transition from primary to secondary school when the new school demands can produce more stress, depression, and anxiety symptoms in autistic students and, therefore, school failure or even school dropout. These facts show the need to introduce changes in the educational context.

In this sense, the “Inclusion of People with Autism in Europe. Improving scholar transitions from primary to secondary school” project (IPA2) aimed at decreasing school vulnerability of students on the autism spectrum in their transition from primary to secondary school.

The project also improved relationships in school between autistic students and their peers and classmates, and provided teachers from primary and secondary schools with strategies to improve the academic performance of their autistic students, and to reduce their anxieties and stress related to school issues.

In order to achieve this objectives, IPA2 developed and piloted an online training course and a e-learning platform for teachers developed by a co-created methodology involving end-users to identify their curricular and training requirements. In order to improve relationships between autistic students and their teachers and classmates, guidelines and videos were also produced for a more inclusive, emphatic and supportive school environment.

The IPA2 project was complementary to the Erasmus+ project IPA+,  that released in 2018 a reference point for training all professionals working with persons on the autism spectrum, independently of their area of knowledge. With IPA2, the partnership aimed at keeping promoting an inclusive society for people on the autism spectrum with a co-creating approach by focusing on teachers and autistic pupils, their families and peers to improve their quality of life and wellbeing.

Six partners from five different countries came together in the IPA2 partnership, including: the reseach institute Polibienestar (Spain), Autismo Burgos from Spain, the Portuguese Federation for Autism – FPDA from Portugal, the Foundation A Thousand of Wishes – Fondacija hiljadu zelja from Serbia, Social IT from Italy, and Autism-Europe from Belgium.

Visit the project dedicated website

About the Erasmus+ Programme

Erasmus+ is the EU’s programme to support education, training, youth and sport in Europe. Its budget of €14.7 billion will provide opportunities for over 4 million Europeans to study, train, gain experience, and volunteer abroad.