Ideas to Reflect upon the New Renaissance of School after Covid-19

We are slowly emerging from an emergency period, a time when the total lockdown imposed the massive use of online teaching as the only way to guarantee an educational continuity. Since the scenario appears still uncertain, school managers and teachers are imagining possible settings for a reopening in September. Many are still wondering about what to bring in a new “school of normality” from the “school of emergency”. However, the term “normality” keeps on being ‘clouded’ by hypotheses of precautionary measures of social distancing and of hygiene standards still in force, which will not allow us to get back to the rhythms, the habits and the didactic-organisational routines of the school we used to know. And the word ‘new school’ sets the border between an opportunity of renovation of the school system and the restoration of a status quo which could dangerously stop the innovation process that many schools and institutes had already started to implement before the pandemic!

And because our past literature and historic facts cannot give us a reference framework of such magnitude in which to insert the online teaching phenomenon, we are writing a new page of school on a global scale. An incredible and unmissable opportunity to develop a new education structure which will require an unusual organisational logic, building on the so-called “lesson learnt”. But which one?

After a first phase of disorientation, all the Italian teachers started to use technology, discovering its advantages and benefits. Apparently, the historical gap between technology pros and cons has been overcome, but it is necessary for school to create a system of infrastructural and technologic organisation, to be used in a natural way.

One hour of live class cannot be simply transferred online. You need to re-calibrate didactic actions essentialising curricular contributions, as well as the time and the means by which to develop them. We should thin out this curriculum always so “impossible to complete” and make a radical choice on which we can build bridges between the various disciplines in accordance with their epistemological identity.

In times of online teaching, teachers and students rediscovered the fundamental value of relationships. Closer, more caring, and genuine relations offered new interpretations to roles and mutual functions, overcoming the narrow limits of formality and, often, of “bureaucratic routines”.

Didacta 2020 will be a good meeting point to discuss these 3 points. Since the Fair will take place in October, it will guarantee the debate for a school which has not found its final status yet, but which will experiment blended solutions. A school made of live and remote moments, which, however, unlike “emergency school”, will have the opportunity to plan training programmes, considering the essential tools to renovate the educational model: teaching methods to overcome transmissive teaching, digital contents to support the exploration and discovery of knowledge and new systems of formative evaluation.