Agrupamento de Escolas de Marrazes

The Agrupamento de Escolas de Marrazes (AEM) in Portugal is an institution of public education, located in the municipality of Leiria. It is a school l with the special status of Educational Territory of Priority Intervention (TEIP) serving a large number of students who belong to families from low and disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds and from several different cultural contexts.

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AEM is an organization that integrates:

- 10 kindergartens with 21 classes of children from 3 years old to 6 years old.

- 13 primary schools with 49 classes of students from 6 years old to 9 years old.

- a main school, of the 2nd and 3rd cycle of basic education, with 33 classes, with students from 10 years old to 15 years old.

AEM has a total of 176 teachers, 62 operational assistants, 6 technical assistants, 2 psychologists, 1 speech therapist and 1 socio-cultural animator.

The total number of students is approximately 2040.

There is a significant number of students who come from various countries (Brazil, Angola, Sao Tome, Cape Verde, Morocco, Ukraine, Russia, China, Venezuela…) creating a truly multicultural school.

Many of these students are inserted in dysfunctional family structures, with socioeconomic difficulties. They exhibit behaviors shaped by parental experiences of school disinvestment and difficulties of school inclusion due to low levels of parental academic and vocational training.

Also a large part of these students reveal learning disabilities, relationship difficulties as well as behavior problems.

These characteristics have a great impact on the differentiated responses that the school should give to students. That is why we seek to participate and develop projects that involve students and teachers to learn and share new approaches, strategies and methodologies.

There is also a Multidisciplinary Team to Support Inclusive Education (EMAEI), made up of teachers from all educational levels and psychologists, who are responsible for implementing and monitoring support measures for students, with the most diverse difficulties, in order to facilitate their inclusion and their academic success.

The school also has a partnership with institutions of social solidarity that develops projects that aims to promote social inclusion and community participation of children, young people and the community, from different cultural contexts, through networking and a positive innovative and holistic approach to reality.

We believe that the answers we have to give, in some cases, are not sufficient and are not effective enough. Therefore, we are open to any strategies or methodologies that help to improve our skills contributing to the construction of a truly democratic school.

We believe that we learn little by ourselves and learn a lot together with others.