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Why sustainability now? Sustainability Education Network Service eTwinning. SENSE Group.

For a long time, we have heard the word sustainability linked to education in various media.

When, in 1987, the former Norwegian Prime Minister and president of the Brundtland Report Commission (UN) spoke of sustainable development in Our Common Future, she did not know the relevance and scope that this term would have by now with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These were a historical milestone that would emphasise the state and situation of the planet due to the overexploitation of natural resources, social inequalities and the loss of biodiversity.

But what does this have to do with education? Why do we call education sustainable? Let us think for a moment that our students, in a few years, will be citizens with responsibilities and countless decisions will depend on them. The training and learning of skills acquired in their basic training period will be essential for their actions to take into account universal principles of sustainability, such as social equity, bio mimesis, prevention, precaution, participation and access to information, shared responsibility and restoration of damage.

Why not then introduce sustainable competence alongside the rest of the key competences? This new cross-cutting approach to all areas, and the backbone of projects, would enable the development of active and participatory methodologies; and consequently meaningful, reflective and critical learning for the benefit and motivation of the educational community and society.

And so we come to SENSE, your eTwinning group on sustainability, where collaborative work, the exchange of experiences, and learning is present as a hallmark of its own.

From 2015 to the present, SENSE has been continually transforming to offer information not only on the different regulations of the UN, UNESCO, and the European Commission, but also training on the SDGs, and their implementation in schools through real models, the SDGs in Art, the loss of biodiversity and its relationship with the pandemic, climate change, the importance of looking for good sources of information...

Throughout the year, with the eTwinning Weeks and other great eTwinning moments, SENSE is present in collaboration with Eco-Schools, Networks for Sustainability, and universities to offer interesting, up-to-date and innovative meetings, creating two big annual events on Earth Day, and World Environment Day. Moreover, this year 2021, the SENSE group is collaborating with the European Commission EU Green Deal Recommendation in order to obtain information about the challenges faced in the classroom when teaching Sustainability Education with the aim of developing meaningful projects.

The three-day workshops in June have been learning moments with experts such as Fernando Valladares (CSIC), Deirdre Hodson (European Commission), Laura González (ASPEA), Lucía Vázquez (SDGs & Art), Marvic Refalo (EcoSchools). eTwinners have been given the opportunity to participate in chats and walls, and TeachMeet, an enrichment tool among equals, and a stimulus for participants. On more than one occasion the meetings have proved so successful that the experts themselves were on the point of being left out of the videoconference room.

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We invite you to share your initiatives, projects and campaigns in the group.

SENSE group. You know it makes sense!