On this episode, we talk about
- Vocational schools
- Teacher transformation
- Conquering student trust
Our guest for episode 12 of experimentQ podcast is César Marques, a physics and chemistry teacher, turned innovator at Almada Professional School in Portugal. We discovered Cesar via the HundrED.org ambassadorship program and he inspired us to shed some light on the vocational schools and the innovators from within the system. A student of a vocational school himself, and later on a physics and chemistry teacher, Cesar got tired of classical lecturing and social stereotypes towards professional school. A couple of years ago Cesar had an aha moment when he realized his love for science could not coexist with a high rate of student failure due to classical teaching. He and his team started to rethink the pedagogical methodology at the school, they focused 60% of the program on soft skills and opened up student projects to local community challenges.
On this episode we discuss the misleading social attitude towards vocational schools, overcoming failure mindset, gaining student trust and innovating pedagogy from within.
About the guest
02:35 - Cesar Marques - origins story
03:20 - The accidental path to Professional School in Almada School (EPA)
04:50 - On passions, freedom to innovate and being an educator.
05:35 - New learning experiences in 2018
06:20 - On failure and success.
07:35 - Life as a trumpet Jazz
The story of teacher transformation
08:55 - Changes at EPA
10:05 - Transforming as a teacher and the love of science
14:05 - Student demographics EPA. Dealing with difficulty
17:20 - The state of Vocational Schools in Portugal
19:05 - Changing society's mindset towards vocational schools
20:20 - The curriculum change at EPA and proven results
22:30 - Getting the buy-in for teacher transformation. Junior Achievement
26:35 - Prototyping the future - European Schoolnet
28:20 - A typical day at EPA
29:35 - On overcoming failure mindset
32:05 - Adjusting to a class's diverse motivations
34:10 - On ways to measure students success
35:35 - Gaining results with new pedagogical methodologies
36:35 - Community involvement. Open schools for open societies
39:00 - A dream scenario for professional schools
40:35 - Systemic changes - trust and freedom for schools
42:05 - The future of vocational schools in the age of AI / Robotics
49:05 - Advice for educators
52:05 - Advice for a “failed student”
56:05 - If I was the Minister of Education
59:05 - A message to the world
60:05 - Open mic: Errors as an opportunity to grow.
1:02:05 - Ways to get in touch.